David’s Insight on “Refuge"
The Blasdel Barn, built by pioneer settler Frank W. Porter in 1908, stands today with much of its original architecture and materials intact. The barn was unique in its day for both its size and the architectural elements that were not typical of this area. Porter was from Wisconsin and the building favors the designs of the Midwest at that time. Of note, most of the timber used in the post-and-beam construction was squared from a single tree. Built to last and to thrive in all conditions, this iconic structure is slowly succumbing to the elements. Purchased by Jesse and Ethel Blasdel in 1945, they later sold it to the Creston Fish and Wildlife Service in 1987. The barn is in the Blasdel Waterfowl Protection Area in the Flathead Valley. The 537-acre WPA provides year-round habitat for waterfowl and wildlife with year-round ponds. The barn is off limits for visiting but extraordinary to view none-the-less.