White Barn Holds Sheridan History

The barn that sat for decades at the corner of Fifth Street and Mydland Road in Sheridan has been identified as the PK Ranch hay barn.

The information comes from Colin Betzler, executive director of the Sheridan Community Land Trust, and from documents on file in the Sheridan Public Library Wyoming Room.

The structure is considered an excellent example of the gothic or “beehive” roofed barn popular in the western United States from around 1915 to 1930. An application in 2005, nominating the barn to the Mayor's Landmark Register, stated the structure was probably built between 1910 and 1930.

Around 2005, the Sheridan Community Land Trust became involved in efforts to preserve the barn as a community facility. The land trust director said the barn was offered to the Sheridan County Fairgrounds, but hurdles, including the costs of restoring, remodeling and moving the structure, proved prohibitive.

The PK Ranch was established around 1879 or 1880 by the Patrick Brothers, who operated the first stage line through this area of Wyoming. The ranch was one of the first in this area, and reportedly covered almost 20,000 acres. A.S. Patrick managed the ranch and died there in June 1916 at age 75. By the 1920s, the ranch was in the hands of P.J. Morgan and his wife. They hosted rodeos there, starting around 1927 or '28 and continuing into the 1940s.

Donald H. Roberts acquired the ranch around 1960 from Holly Sugar. He later sold the barn to the Rockwell company, but when the company failed, the barn passed into the hands of the state. The Sheridan land trust director said the state tried to donate the barn to the trust, but when that fell through, the facility was sold to Cary Sampson for $10. For Sheridan Media, I'm Pat Blair.

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