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The first in the Norton/Library of Congress Visual Sourcebooks series, Barns presents a broad, fresh, and newly informed visual analysis of one of America's fundamental building types. In a nation founded upon agrarian principles, with a cultural and physical landscape as vast as it is diverse, the barn has long been recognized as an American icon. Drawn from the vast holdings of the Library of Congress, nearly 1,000 illustrations provide a tour of barns across the United States, from New England to the Great Lakes to the South, Midwest, and Far West. Barns traces geographical and chrological continuities of type, design, and construction, and Dutch, German, French and Spanish influence. Captions identify each document and building, and all images are included on a CD-ROM with a link to the Library's high-resolution files. Barns is the first comprehensive visual resource of its kind, an invaluable tool for architects, historians, students, and all those who love barns.
John Michael Vlach is professor of American Studies at George Washington University in Washington, D.C.