"The latest idea in poultry houses is to provide an open shed attached to the roosting room, in order that the fowl may have a place for exercise in the open air during the winter months. If the floor is kept covered with several inches of straw, chaff, leaves, or other light dry material, the whole grain is scattered in this, the fowl will get abundant exercise in scratching for their feed. This keeps them warm as well as busy and they are healthier for it, lay more eggs, and are more fertile."(Barn Plans and Outbuildings, 1881)
The scratch shed was in essence the chicken's gym, void of treadmills, cycles, and barbells. As seen the photo, the original structure had four windows that could be opened for ventilation or closed to keep in the heat during winter months. Over the years, the scratch shed has been converted to a vehicle storage shed. In the historic photo the scratch shed is the structure in the middle and the chicken house is on the far right. An interior doorway connected the two buildings and is still seen today.
View of the scratch shed today. Note its conversion to accommodate vehicles used by the later ranch occupants.
Last updated: April 7, 2022