DANVILLE — The Cartlidge Barn that stood on the north side of Rockville Road in Avon for almost 200 years will now be at the Hendricks County 4-H Fairgrounds for years to come.
When Florence and Harry Cartlidge bought the barn about 60 years ago, they raised sheep and sold Christmas trees.
“My mother hired over 100 high school kids to work on the farm,” said Cathy Mekel, daughter of the Cartlidges. “Everyone drove by that barn for years; I and then my children grew up in that barn.”
The family lived at the location until Florence Cartlidge died. The family then sold the grounds to Hendricks Regional Health and the YMCA to create the new facility there.
About two years ago, when the family was getting ready to take the barn down, they learned that the 4-H Fair Board was looking for a preservation barn.
“We were going to save all of the wood and build a house ourselves with it, but then we decided it had been in Hendricks County for about 200 years and it needed to stay here,” Mekel said. “This is a great place; my mother and I were both in 4-H, so it’s a perfect location.”
When they were getting ready to take the barn down, they had made drawings so they knew exactly how to put it back up. The pieces have been stored at a facility in Frankfort for the past two years. Once enough funds were raised for the rebuild, all of the pieces were brought to the fairgrounds.
Faith Toole, Cartlidge Barn Project Fund chairperson, has been working with the Mekels since Cathy Mekel saw an article in the Hendricks County Flyer about the Hendricks County Antique Tractor and Machinery Club looking a preservation barn. But the tractor club had been looking at other barns.