Living in a Log Cabin

Rustic homes are undergoing a dramatic modern evolution these days. The log cabin has a solid place in history and is now making trend and in demand as a feature outbuilding or cottage.

There still exists the thoughtful hand-crafted extraordinary log homes brimming with traditional whimsical furniture. These log builds are to behold.


The History

Historically log cabin construction has its roots in Scandinavia and Eastern Europe. Although their origin is uncertain, the first log structures were probably built in Northern Europe in the Bronze Age (about 3500 BC). By the time Europeans began to settle in North America, they had a long tradition of using logs for houses, barns, and other outbuildings in the Scandinavian countries, Germany, Northern Russia and Ukraine.

Log cabins were the preferred homes of the pioneers for several reasons. One, they were easy to build. Trees were everywhere and the new tools allowed for easy and affordable access to building materials. (The record for three men constructing a single room log cabin complete with chimney and fireplace is presently three days!)

Historic log cabin

Initially cabins were constructed without windows, mainly because glass was hard to get and easily broken. Often, however, window openings were covered with animal skins to keep out the insects.

The fireplace was the heart of the home. Winters were often long and brutal and fireplaces brought families together by providing both warmth and light. Stones for the fireplaces were almost always dug from the ground immediately surrounding the home.


The earliest log homes always had notched corners. Nails were not available in the wilderness and builders quickly became skilled at cutting notches on the ends of logs that allowed the logs to be “locked” together.

from “The Rustic Home”
Ralph Kylloe

Building a Log Cabin in Alaska

Beautiful documentary filmed on a tripod camera in 1968 follows Dick through his adventure in Alaska building his own log cabin.

Christmas in a Traditional Log Cabin

I was lucky enough to enjoy a (and white to boot!) Christmas housed in a traditional log cabin at a ranch in Denver a few years back, called Devil’s Thumb.  Definitely worth a visit!


The World’s Largest Log Cabin

Squirrelled away enough to buy this? The world’s largest log cabin. A mere $US40M. Lake Superior, Michigan, USA.