Hay And Hay Mows

Discussion in 'Other Reminiscences' started by Ken Anderson, Jun 11, 2019.

  1. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Posted in response to a post in the scents thread.

    Once I post this, I am going to move it to a thread of its own because, while your post was on-topic in a thread about scents, mine would not be. Each summer, my uncle would mow land that my dad owned and sell the hay, after stocking my dad's barn full of hay for his (21, at one time) horses. We had a large barn, with a section for the cow stalls (we had five stalls, but I don't remember having more than one cow at a time). On the other end of the barn, lengthwise, was a shelter for the horses. In the middle was an area where a tractor and wagon full of hay could be brought in, with doors on both sides of the barn. Above the cow barn and the horse barn was the hay mows, which were lofts that ran along the length of the barn, divided by the section where the hay wagon could unload (the tractors were stored there otherwise). Both hay mows would be stacked to the ceiling with tightly-packed, rectangular hay bales, and then more hay would be stacked in the area where the tractors would otherwise be.

    By December, the hay in the area between the hay mows would be used up, and once enough of the hay in the mows were removed to allow us to move them around, we would re-stack them to form rooms and hallways, with steps, and other accoutrements, and it was very comfortable in these rooms, even in a Michigan February. Sometimes, we'd build forts in both of the hay mows.
     
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  2. Bess Barber

    Bess Barber Active Member
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    Never heard it called a 'hay mow'. Is that a northern term? Ours were just 'hay stacks'. We did play in them, but had to watch for mice and snakes.
     
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  3. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    hay-mow.jpg
    Hay mow

    haystack.jpg
    Haystack
     
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  4. Shirley Martin

    Shirley Martin Veteran Member
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    Here, they were called hay lofts. My sons liked to jump out of the top door when we went to Mama and Daddy's house. They would put something like a piece of old bed sheet around their neck and yell, "Superman!" as they jumped. I remember the smell of new mown hay well.
     
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  5. Bess Barber

    Bess Barber Active Member
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    Thanks for the visual, Between my senior moments and blonde moments, I tend to need expanded explanations. LOL.
     
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  6. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Actually, our's was more like this, but without the hill. The wagon unloaded at the ground floor. The hay mow was the part of the barn where the hay was kept, which were the lofts, and the roof was open gable rather than rounded or gambrel.

    haybarn.jpg

    We rarely had snakes or rodents, maybe because we had barn cats.
     
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    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
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  7. Mary Robi

    Mary Robi Well-Known Member
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    I thought "Hey Mo!" was just something that Larry and Curley yelled a lot.....
     
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  8. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    There were people in the area who had large outdoor haystacks. I don't know a lot about it but it seemed like a bad idea to me, mostly because by the time the haystack was half used up, the rest of it was nasty with snakes and stuff.
     
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  9. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    The way that it is pronounced, it rhymes with cow. For more information, see the Word Detective. According to that source, by the original definition of the word, a haystack could also be called a hay mow. However, we had both hay mows and haystacks in the UP of Michigan, and they weren't the same thing.
     
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