Barn Record Sprague

Building Name (Common)
Building Name (Historic)
Sunrise Dairy Farm
45 Sunrise Drive, Sprague



Historic Significance

Architectural description:

This is a 2 1/2 story gable-entry gambrel stable barn with a gable-roofed addition. The main facade faces south towards Sunrise Dairy Farm, which runs approximately east-west. The barn is severely deteriorated. The main entry is a pair of exterior sliding doors, each with eight fixed panes. The west corner has a pass-through exterior sliding door, now gone. The second story has a pair of vents. Below the apex of the roof is a pair of window spaces. Form the main grade to about the four foot mark on this facade and all around the barn is concrete block masonry for the foundation. Extending south off this facade is the gable-roofed addition. The west eave-facade has a series of stable windows and four dormers as does the east eave-facade. The failing roof is asphalt shingles topped with three metal ventilators. The interior of the barn has a large number of stanchions, indicating that the barn was used for dairy.

Historical significance:

By the early 20th century agricultural engineers developed a new approach to dairy barn design: the ground-level stable barn, to reduce the spread of tuberculosis bacteria by improving ventilation, lighting, and reducing the airborne dust of manure. A concrete slab typically serves as the floor for the cow stables. Many farmers converted manure basements in older barns into ground-level stables with concrete floors. Some older barns were jacked up and set on new first stories to allow sufficient headroom. With the stables occupying the entire first story, the space above serves a a hayloft. By the 1920s most ground-level stable barns were being constructed with lightweight balloon frames using two-by-fours or two-by-sixes for most of the timbers. Tongue-and-groove beveled siding is common on the walls, although asbestos cement shingles also were a popular sheathing. Some barns have concrete for the first-story walls, either poured in place or built up out of blocks. The gambrel roof design was universally accepted as it enclosed a much greater volume than a gable roof did, and its shape could be formed with trusses.

Field Notes

Delivered milk to Sprague residents and surrounding towns. Assessor's Property Cards: Barn- 1 story: c.1900, 1, 196 sq. ft. Barn- 1 story: c. 1900, 2,040 sq. ft. Barn- 2 story: c. 1900, 2,040 sq. ft.

Use & Accessibility

Use (Historic)

Use (Present)

Exterior Visible from Public Road?




Location Integrity



Related features

Environment features

Relationship to surroundings

The barn sits behind a long wagon shed/garage, a couple of small outbuildings, and the farmhouse, which faces the road.

Typology & Materials

Building Typology


Structural System


Roof materials

Roof type

Approximate Dimensions

See Field Notes


Date Compiled


Compiled By

Todd Levine, reviewed by the Connecticut Trust


Photographs and field notes by Sprague Historical Society - 12/09/2009

Visser, Thomas D.,Field Guide to New England Barns and Farm Buildings, University Press of New England,1997.

Town of Sprague Assessors office

Sexton, James, PhD, Survey Narrative of the Connecticut Barn, Connecticut Trust for Historic Preservation, Hamden, CT, 2005,

PhotosClick on image to view full file