I Thought They Were Usually Roosters

Melissa SandfortAgricultural Anthropology

It’s a classic farm-house icon. The rooster on top of the barn. At least that’s what I always thought they were. But my grandfather proved me wrong with this combination weather vane/lightning rod in the shape of a horse.

This one is made out of copper and scrap metal so it’s heavy. Today, they’re made of aluminum. Back then, they showed the wind direction and acted as a lightning rod; today, they only tell you which way the wind is blowing on the horse’s rear end (or rooster’s tail feathers).

Now I know it’s kind of hard to see from this picture, but either my dad or my uncle was a pretty good shot with a BB gun and got this ol’ horse right between its hind legs.

Until our next history lesson …