The Koop

Last Thursday’s Doors were captured when a friend and I went to what you might call an indoor flea marketing held in a chicken coop in Lee, New Hampshire.

The ‘Koop’ is owned by a fellow Master Gardener, and it is open once a month. As we were driving there, we discussed how this sale could be held in a chicken coop. I’m pretty familiar with chicken coops, and I wasn’t picturing it.

When the GPS announced we were at our destination, it was quite a surprise to see a three-story chicken coop. It was a challenge to back up far enough across the road to attempt to capture it from end to end.

It was even more surprising when we walked in to find the place painted white, cleaner than some homes, and all of the items for sale sparkling in the sunlight.

There was a ton of stuff that I could have picked up but settled for a chicken waterer that will become a planter, a white rattan magazine rack for the porch, and a set of antique metal measuring cups that are identical to ones my grandmother used. Fun stuff.

Now, for a little history.

A few years ago, my friend, who lives on the neighboring farm purchased the chicken coop building when it went into foreclosure. She wanted to make sure she knew who the new neighbor was going to be and that the land was kept as is.

After purchasing the building, she and two friends decided to clear out their attics. These are not regular attics, these are 15 room farm house attics holding generations of accumulated treasures. So, the coop became the Koop.

These ladies are also very involved in their community church and take donations. The money earned from the donations is then returned to a church fund. Local people who need a helping hand to make a deposit on an apartment or furniture to furnish it can apply for assistance. They’re paying it forward, which is always a good thing.

She also told me that during the WWII years, the chicken coop shipped chickens to Baltimore, MD, where the meat was destined for our soldiers. The Thursday Doors building last week with its large garage door was used to house and perform maintenance on the trucks used for transporting the chickens.

During our conversation she also mentioned that there was a 1800’s cemetery and a wood boiler behind that building. The boiler produced heat that was delivered through a pipe under the road to the chicken coop to keep the chickens warm in the winter. Road trip. 🙂

I’ve asked more questions and touched base with another MG friend from Lee to see if I can learn anything else because so far I am fascinated.

New England is an interesting place with all of its early history but normally as you drive by an old building or barn there isn’t a source to question. Here’s hoping I can learn more about the life of these buildings and pass it on.

May the sun shine bright on you this week, and here’s wishing you have a great one. I’ll be outside doing chores or inside working on my apron project. 🙂

About Judy@NewEnglandGardenAndThread

Master Gardener who enjoys gardening, quilting, photography, and traveling.
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27 Responses to The Koop

  1. Dan Antion says:

    Wow – that is some chicken coop, Judy! I love that it has been preserved and placed back into service to help people in need. It much be a huge effort to get that place stocked and ready for a sale. Good luck chasing down the history. Enjoy the week.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow! Never seen a chicken coop like that before! And what an interesting history. Have fun finding out more about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Murphy's Law says:

    Love this post! Fascinated is an understatement. What a great way to repurpose that building so that it’s still serving those in need. Can’t wait to learn more.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great story! I love knowing the history of the things we see as we buzz through our busy lives. It sounds like the operators of the KOOP have a great mission!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a great discovery, Judy, and some fascination history. You threw me off for a moment when I read “Last Thursday’s Doors” and for a moment thought it was time for TD again before realizing it’s only Monday. 🙂 Hope you get the most out of your week.


    Liked by 1 person

  6. Joyce says:

    Mystery solved! I never would have guessed the use of last week’s fascinating doors! I like the resourcefulness of New Englanders. They need a garage to store trucks – they add one – boilers for heat? Look out back! Oh, and that’s a great spot for a cemetery – DONE! In the “newer” parts of the country, there’d be some some nervous neighborhood association yelling, “Hold it right there! This is zoned ‘rural’ – no ‘retail operation’ for you!” Bullies!
    How fun for you to find those measuring cups, planter, and porch rack! Those kinds of excursions are ones I love the best – trips into the past that bring up good memories of times spent with grandma!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Nancy says:

    BIG, HUGE, LARGE… words that come to mind but also Big, Huge and Large on history! Incredible that there is someone who can answer your questions about the place. Love it!
    When I was young we use to go get fresh eggs from a chicken Farm… all housed in a long, one story coop. You just jogged my memory! Thank You!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. How great that you found a set of measuring cups just like the ones your Grandma used. I’ve always wanted a set from France, but never bought any when there. I need to go back! 🙂

    Really cool history you uncovered about the building you featured last week on Thursday Doors.
    The Paying it Forward aspect is really special.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Laurie Graves says:

    I’m with Dan. That is some coop. Loved reading about how the Koop got started. Sounds like a place with many temptations.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Great story…so interesting to know these things and hear a little of the history before it is lost.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. joey says:

    That is fascinating! I am truly enchanted! The Koop sounds like a terrific place to spend some time.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. joyroses13 says:

    Very interesting… so cool that you were able to find out the history. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. pbmgarden says:

    Judy, you’re an amazing resource for interesting stories and places. Have a good week.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Interesting and unexpected backstory.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Those chickens must have had individual three-bedroom suites! What a great background story (and thanks for the cemetery pictures… I’m a big fan of old cemeteries).

    Liked by 1 person

    • I thought the cemetery stones from the 1800’s were interesting in that the ages were displayed in years, months and days. I don’t know that I’d seen that before. The wife’s name only included her first name and middle initial with her husband’s name beneath it which I’m not sure I’d ever seen either. It is well maintained and a real look into the past.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. How interesting. I’m glad you followed up for us Judy.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Oddment says:

    I think there is a whole novel here. What stories these places tell! And what admiration I feel for the women who are now writing the next chapters. I cannot imagine how this place became clean and white; the memory that was jogged for me was those places with live chickens where I’d go with my mom or grandma to buy dinner. She’d point to the one she wanted, and next thing I knew we’d be leaving with a package. Those places smelled AWFUL. And yet we have a place like the Koop, memorializing chickens and a fascinating history. Thanks so much, Judy — this is good stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m going to use the word spotless because that is what it was, and it still amazes me. Everything was painted white – the walls and the ceiling. The floors didn’t have a speck of dirt on them, the checkout counter was bright yellow, and the items for sale looked like they had all just been dusted, cleaned, or come out of a dishwasher. And, every item had a tag with a description of the item and a price. These ladies really know how to do it. You’d love it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. germac4 says:

    That was an interesting bit of history & nice to see the building being put to good use now … It must have been built very well .. All those years ago!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Now this was fun & fascinating! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Brenda says:

    Fascinating. It always makes me sad to see decrepit old coops and barns falling in on themselves.
    I love to see them put to good use. Still, I’m glad I wasn’t on the cleaning crew for that coop–must have been a dusty, stinking chore.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Joanne Sisco says:

    This is one of those wonderfully warm, feel-good stories. I’m always in awe of people who have a vision like this and can make it happen!
    That is one mighty impressive chicken coop – made even more impression by your description of its new life!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Love the ‘paying it forward’ story in your post, Judy. That is the biggest chicken coop I’ve ever seen, even on a commercial level, and what a fabulous setting for a flea market. I’m looking forward to any more history you uncover.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. reocochran says:

    This was an incredible post and magnificent project to undertake, Judy. Thanks for sharing and will look forward to any further history or information. The way they kept the chickens warm was so fascinating. Some roosters and chickens stay I their coops with extra straw or hay plus my aunt and uncle would put some kind of heater in their coop in below zero temps. Happy gardening and getting ready for Master Gardeners annual event, Judy. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Annie says:

    So glad to know about The Koop and will have to mosey over that way. New Hampshire is a fascinating place! New discoveries all the time…

    Liked by 1 person

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