June is traditionally a popular month for weddings and my aunt and uncle, Esther and Al Krueckeberg, celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary a couple weeks ago. They married in June of 1951.
My mom and dad had married the year before and were both members of the Krueckeberg-Schumm wedding party. I have a formal photo of the Krueckeberg-Schumm wedding but the photo I find most interesting is this snapshot taken at their wedding reception.
The Krueckeberg-Schumm wedding reception was held in my Grandpa Schumm’s barn, which was located just west of the home where my mom and her sisters grew up a couple miles east of Willshire. It was quite a barn in its day but was damaged during a windstorm in 2012 and was torn down several months after that.
The barn was built in 1886 and looked like this in the early 1900s:
I believe my aunt Amy said her wedding reception was held in the barn, too. I never really thought about it, but apparently a barn was a popular place for a wedding reception back then. Why not? There would have been plenty of room for dining and dancing and celebrating.
The C.L. Schumm barn looked like this in 1947, a few years before the Krueckeberg-Schumm wedding:
Barns are popular reception venues today, but years ago the barns were working buildings, complete with livestock, grain, and farm equipment. Reception barns today are primarily just for receptions and parties.
When I look at the photo of my aunt Esther’s wedding party, sitting there at a table in the barn, I can’t help but wonder how much work the family did to clean up the barn and get it ready for the wedding reception. It took lot of work, I am sure!
I doubt that my parents used the family barn for their wedding reception. Instead I think they used the church basement. Esther and Al were married in June and the weather would have been nice and warm. My parents were married in December 1950, just a week after the big Thanksgiving blizzard. It was probably too cold to hold a reception in the barn in the winter.
The C.L. Schumm barn looked like this in about 1990:
A couple photos taken inside the barn in 2012, just before it was taken down. You can see where all those old windows were:
What memories that old barn held!
Happy Wedding Anniversary, Esther and Al!