The Country: Barn Fever

On a Sunday spin in the country, one of the scenic delights used to be the handsomely weather-beaten, quaintly dilapidated barns that lined rural roads. The pleasure is fast vanishing. From New England to the Midwest, the old barns are being dismantled by barn buyers who covet their richly textured boards and hand-hewn beams, sell them to satisfy America's increasingly nostalgic appetite for rustic building materials. The barn boards are being used in homes mostly as warm wall paneling for family rooms, dens and country kitchens, or for cabinets to contain the...