the barnhart family 

generations of family memories, hard work, love, and laughter laid the foundation for bluestem hall

bluestem hall owner, abbie is the 5th generation at the barnhart farm and homestead. Her grandpa harry poured the concrete floor and foundation of bluestem hall himself. he took such pride and care to construct what used to be knows as "the shed" spending countless days and nights "watering" the concrete every hour to make sure it was a smooth, flat surface. Abbie's grandparents and great-grandparents thought long and hard in 1963 about where bluestem hall should be located. They decided it should be close enough for a blizzard and far enough for a sunset, and that is where she lays.

 

a working farm building, bluestem hall WAS not only a space to house sleeping tractors and work on cars, but also a community gathering spot. a PLACE that held square dances in the 60's,  A SITE FOR HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL PRACTICE in the 70's, AND MOST OF ALL GRANDPA HARRY'S BELOVED WORK BENCH for life. a building that has been SHELTERING CREATIVE THOUGHT, inventions, do-it-yourself mindsets, and far fetched plans since its beginning. 

IN 1998, THE BARNHART FARM BEGAN ITS CONVERSION TO A NATIVE PRAIRIE RESTORATION. wITH FAMILY MEMBERS, FRIENDS, AND NEIGHBORS COLLECTING NATIVE SPECIES ALONG RAILROADS AND IN CEMETARIES, THE BARNHART PRAIRIE NATURE PRESERVE BEGAN ITS ROOTS AS A STATE PROTECTED WILDLIFE Preservation. As a FAMILY FULL OF NATURALISTS, WE WERE THRILLED TO SEE THE PLANTS THRIVE, THE ANIMALS MOVE HOME, AND THE NATIVE ILLINOIS ECOLOGY FLOURISH THE WAY IT HAS! WE ARE EVEN HOME TO THE endangered FRANKLIN'S GROUND SQUIRREL. Every year the ecology gets stronger, the roots get deeper, and we can't be happier to share our land with this stunning neighbor.

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