By Luke Anderson
August 5, 2015
The Miller Barn is located on the prairie 20 miles north of Newcastle, Wyoming, close to Four Corners, Wyoming. The barn was built for Polish homesteaders Walentz Podlaszewski and Veronica Zwolkowski Podlaszewski around 1910. Walentz worked in the nearby Cambria salt mines, and the people there couldn’t pronounce his name, so they dubbed him Charles Miller. This is why the building is called the Miller Barn and not the Podlaszewski Barn.
The building is in fair condition considering its age. It is a two-story wood framed agricultural barn that includes a milk parlor and hay loft. It has a stone foundation that was likely quarried from a nearby creek. There is a nearly identical barn located three to four miles away from the Miller Barn that is in much better condition and is still in use. These barns were likely built by the same builder at similar times. The Miller Barn has suffered from years of neglect, leading to significant deterioration and weathering, as it is located in one of the regions of harshest winter weather in Wyoming. The barn needs repairs to restore it to its original majesty, although the fact that it still stands as a whole after 100 years is a testament to its resilience.
The Miller Barn is a significant piece of Wyoming architecture. It is embedded in Wyoming’s past and present. It is a terrific example of traditional wooden barn construction in the region, and pays homage to the historical agricultural tradition of the Polish people of Weston County, and preserves the rural values of agriculture and open spaces that are still prominent in Wyoming today
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This project was funded in part by a Historic Architecture Assistance Fund grant, and completed by Stateline No. 7 Architects. The program is offered by the Alliance for Historic Wyoming in partnership with Wyoming Main Street and the Wyoming State Historic Preservation Office, and is made possible by a grant from the Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund.