Sangamon Reclaimed

In the Illinois capital, a collective of veterans and firefighters take old barns and turn them into new symbols of the American spirit.

in Illinois Makers
October 02, 2017

| words

Barns are a staple of the Midwestern landscape. The artisans of Sangamon Reclaimed are determined to keep the story of every barn alive.  

Standing as a reminder of the Midwest's pioneer spirit, old barns have always represented a do-it-yourself spirit, serving as a comforting presence to both history buffs and highway passersby. Yet even as some barns lie abandoned, mere relics of the days when local farmers poured their heart into the land, an indelible reminder of the past remains nestled in the wood grains of their walls, doors, and rafters. In Springfield, Illinois, a collective of local veterans and firefighters carefully dismantles these barns and turns the wood into new works of furniture and art—imbuing each plank with a new purpose while keeping Illinois from forgetting its history.

That central aim—to honor the history of life in the Midwest—drives the artisans of Sangamon Reclaimed as they tend to every timeworn two-by-four. Though each one-of-a-kind piece makes use of  reclaimed wood's natural strength and beauty, the artisans make sure to pay homage to the hardworking American spirit, crafting works such as American flag mosaics and rustic dining-room tables.

Built with a common adoration for the beauty found in reclaimed barn wood, each piece serves as a page in an open history book for future generations to uncover and experience local craftsmanship in a new form. Whether a Midwesterner yourself or a supporter of small-batch artistry, be sure to stop by Sangamon Reclaimed to see handcrafted, repurposed items that are truly Illinois Made.  

Discover more Illinois artisans at Illinois Made.

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