A 30-by-60-foot metal pole barn northwest of Manchester was destroyed by a fire of unknown origin yesterday.
The fire, in the 3700 block of Back Woods Road, was discovered by a neighbor who saw his cow run through a wire fence, apparently trying to escape dense smoke coming from the barn.
A small wagon and other farm equipment were stored in the barn, which had collapsed by the time firefighters arrived, fire officials said.
No people or animals were injured.
Fire equipment from Lineboro, Manchester and Westminster shuttled water to the fire from a nearby pond.
The blaze scorched a larger shed about 25 feet away and burned some brush across the driveway.
Officials from the state fire marshal's office are investigating the cause of the blaze.
No estimate of damage was immediately available.