The Interesting History of Chicken Coops

While working on the Taylor Farm buildings for the City of New Albany, HDC proposed that the chicken coop be repurposed in the proposed park, possibly as a vending facility or restrooms. In the fall of 2023, HDC was asked to prepare HABS documentation of the chicken coop, which the City thought may have to be moved and/or deconstructed because it sits in a flood plain. Our research revealed that at the turn of the century, raising chickens became more industrialized and specific buildings were developed to facilitate laying eggs (laying house), raising young chicks after they have hatched (brooding house), and raising older chickens for meat (broiler house). The building on the Taylor Farm is a laying house. Designs of chicken houses with clerestory windows appeared in USDA guidebooks and poultry journals around 1902, with variations and refinements up through the 1920s. Click here for a copy of the report.
 Jeff Bates photo of the southeast corner of the Taylor Farm Laying House