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Pickering Barn

The Pickering family of Duvall owned the farm since the late 1800s, and three generations live on the farm at this time. It was purchased from the original homesteader, Mr. Peets, in 1886. The railroad was built through the farm in 1906, and the house was finished that same year. While the railroad was being finished, just for breakfast Netty Pickering would feed 10 railroad workers, then feed the 10 people in her family. In total she fed 50 meals per day. The barns were built in 1932 by Alfred and Vern Pickering (father and son). Much of the main barn was built using recycled lumber from the Lutheran Church at Novelty. Because of this, it was the only barn in the valley with wainscoting on the walls. The floor of the barn was 2×12 planks because Alfred Pickering didn’t trust concrete; the concrete foundation on his house had crumbled many years before. Vern Pickering replaced the floor with concrete around 1945. The Pickering family raised and milked dairy cattle for three generations. Originally the cows were hand milked and the milk containers were picked up by riverboat on the Snoqualmie River. During the 1950s, the barn was modernized with a milk tank and a pipeline milking system. This allowed Vern Pickering to ex and his herd from 35 to 55, including young stock. Prior to 1952, Vern Pickering would fill the ha mow with loose ha eve summer. Then the four neighbors went together to buy a baler and haying became a cooperative effort between the farm families. The day the baler arrived, the ladies aid society was meeting over coffee as a beautiful baler was pulled by. They wondered which farmer could afford such an expensive piece of equipment. Little did they know that it was their husbands. In 1964 Vern Pickering sold the dairy cows and raised steers for meat. The farm is adjacent to the former town of Novelty (where a roundabout now sits) which burned down in 1969. In the 1970s Larry Pickering decided to become a horse veterinarian, and farming became a hobby. Since then the farm has been home to 4-H calves, horses, llamas and the occasional goat.