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Take a Tour of Canada's Oldest Pennsylvania Barn at Worldwide Celebration on International Barn Day


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For the first time in history, barn aficionados and history buffs will be able to go on a simultaneous virtual tour of the world's greatest Swiss heritage barns from Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Indiana, Tennessee, Ballenberg and Klosters Switzerland, and Toronto's 200 year-old Schmidt Dalziel Barn, Canada's oldest Pennsylvania barn, located at Black Creek Pioneer Village. This worldwide Celebration of Swiss Barns is organized by the International Bundesbrief Society on Saturday, August 7 and will run from 10 a.m. - noon EST. People will be able to visit one barn in person and see the other barn tours that will be broadcast live via the internet simultaneously from all barn locations. The webcast from the Schmidt Dalziel Barn will start at 10 a.m and will continue to be open for tours throughout the afternoon until 4 p.m.

Black Creek Pioneer Village is one of only 10 locations around the world that will act as meeting places where fans of barn architecture and culture can learn how the religious freedom movement of the Amish and Mennonites created the core of North American Heritage Barns.

"The Schmidt Dalziel Barn at Black Creek Pioneer Village is one of Canada's oldest and rarest barns," said Marty Brent, Manager, Black Creek Pioneer Village. "We are proud to be part of this celebration of Swiss Barns especially when there are few buildings in Canada that survive 200 years, and of that small number, only a handful are barns."

The Schmidt-Dalziel Barn stands just outside the north-west municipal border of the city of Toronto, in Vaughan, Ontario, Canada and is a tribute to the settlers who knew how to build sturdy, functional structures essential to their survival and because of the generations of hard-working farm families who used it well and took care of it for future generations to enjoy.

The Dalziel Barn is classified as a Pennsylvania barn. It was built in 1809 by a settler from America named Johannes Schmidt and was bought by John Dalziel in 1828. It was a working farm until 1954 when the Humber Valley Conservation Authority purchased the property and converted the barn into a museum open for the general public.

Barns have been part of the North American landscape and have quite a following of people interested in their history. Artists paint them, photographers photograph them, poets lionize them, and craftsmen rebuild them.

Facts about the Dalziel Barn:
1) ... it's huge. 8,200 square feet. Only one other is known to be larger in North America.
2) ... it's old. The oldest Pennsylvania barn in Canada and one of the oldest in North America.
3) ... it's still standing on its original location and original foundation.
4) ... its design can be traced back to Europe and represents a style of architecture 450 years old.
5) ... its design represents a unique approach to farming - combining grain production and animal husbandry all under one roof.
6) ... the logs used to build the barn remind us of a time when giant trees covered the landscape and natural resources seemed limitless.
7) ... its relationship to the topography makes it an excellent example of how the early settlers adapted to their immediate environment.
8) ... its history represents a people that came to a new land, defeated the near impenetrable old-growth forests, and brought prosperity to a region void of infrastructure and opportunity.
9) ... it represents the melting pot of cultures that made Canada.
10) ... it became Canada's first agricultural museum, Dalziel Pioneer Park, and was the beginning of Black Creek Pioneer Village - a living history museum with 30 historic buildings, over 50,000 artifacts from the 19th-century, and entertains about 200,000 visitors every season.


To attend this event: Visitors should park in the Black Creek Pioneer Village lot and enter through the Visitors Centre, and follow the signs to the Dalziel Barn, which is a 10 minute walk. Visitors Center doors will open at 9:30 a.m. on Aug 7. Admission to Black Creek Pioneer Village is $15 for adults; $14 for students and seniors; $11 for children (age 5 - 15); free for children 4 and under, and free for members. Memberships are available at the admissions desk.

For details about the Schmidt Dalziel Barn, visit our website at



About Black Creek Pioneer Village
Black Creek Pioneer Village, 1000 Murray Ross Parkway, is Toronto's premier outdoor living history museum. Visitors can explore heritage homes and buildings restored to re-create an 1860s Ontario village. Historic interpreters in period dress demonstrate how villagers lived, worked and played. The Village hosts learning programs and special events that highlight local heritage and culture. The tranquil setting, rural landscapes, heritage gardens and period farm animal breeds make Black Creek Pioneer Village the perfect place to break out of the modern world and journey into the past. Located in north Toronto, Black Creek Pioneer Village is owned and operated by Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA). For more information please visit


Rowena Calpito
Supervisor, Media Management
Toronto and Region Conservation (TRCA)
T: 416-661-6600 ext. 5632
C: 416-358-3446


Eric Philpott
Philpott Communications
T: 905-773-6651