Hoover Barn's restoration is nearing completion behind the Santa Ysabel Store. The large, c. 1890 Dutch-style barn, built by David L. Hoover, had many large sections of its redwood walls cut out, causing the walls to buckle over time. The most challenging part of the restoration was bringing the walls back in line after the missing boards and non-historic siding were replaced.
All of the character-defining materials, features, finishes, and construction techniques were protected and, where missing, restored. The H-frame barn with a central hall plan has a new roof, its cupola has been rebuilt and its two hay pulleys reinstalled. The one-and-a-half story exterior has been patched and repainted the barn's historic color, a shade of ivory that matches the store. What was a deteriorating, neglected building is now a showpiece in the heart of Santa Ysabel.
The barn's four bays were divided into horse stalls and storage space for carriages and harvesting equipment, with a hay loft above. SOHO plans to house historic vehicles such as its Concord stage, which is used for public stage coach rides, and a turn-of-the-century carriage in the barn.
Stay tuned: We'll be asking for volunteers to clean up the 3,000-square-foot interior and grounds before this rare remnant of backcountry agricultural history can open for community use. With this in mind, all new utilities and services were installed. SOHO expects to use the barn for community gatherings, festivals, exhibits, antiques shows and sales, and as a venue for weddings.
SOHO bought the barn in 2015 from the County of San Diego with the help of the San Dieguito River Park Foundation Joint Powers Authority. In 2011, the county commissioned a historical assessment. The report concluded that the barn is eligible for listing on the National Register. SOHO is pursuing local, state, and national landmark status for both the barn and the store. See the article Santa Ysabel and Hoover Barn to be Historically Designated for more on these nominations.