Until the cows come home

May 10, 2016

A highly visible artifact is back on view at Cogswell’s Grant in Essex, Massachusetts. Historic New England recently reinstalled the cow weathervane onto the cupola of the main barn at the 1728 coastal farm.

The weathervane has been absent since it was damaged by a windstorm five years ago. For much of that time, our staff was on the hunt for a similarly designed replacement or reproduction sturdy enough to withstand the wind.

After thorough research, we decided to see if it could be repaired and strengthened instead. Ferro Weathervanes in Warren, Rhode Island, made the repairs; the directional shaft was straightened by blacksmith Peter Happny; and American Steeple & Tower Co., Inc. reinstalled it on the cupola this month.

The next time you visit Cogswell’s Grant, you’ll see a wonderful piece of folk art on top of the barn that echoes the treasures you’ll discover inside the house. The site opens Wednesday, June 1, at 11:00 a.m. Stop by to check out the cow and take a tour.