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Shortly after Herman Ostry bought a piece of property in Bruno, Nebraska, a nearby creek flooded his new barn with 29 inches of water. Herman’s son Mike started thinking about the problem. Mike counted the number of boards, timbers, and nails, estimating the barn’s weight at 19,000 pounds. Mike figured that 344 people would have to lift only 55 pounds each to carry the barn to higher ground.


On June 30, 1988 Mike ingeniously designed a grid of steel tubing to serve as the barn "handles". Herman counted "one, two, three, lift!" The barn rose up off the ground like it weighed nothing at all. The 344 townspeople carried the 9-ton barn 50 yards up a hill in just 3 minutes!