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An Ode to Log Homes

Cabin

Courtesy of Scugog Shores Museum

With our Nation’s Independence Day just a week away, now is a time where many Americans reflect on the rich history of this country and the cultural trends that have carried us to where we are today. There are many things in our history that are definably American, on a list that usually starts with baseball and apple pie, the log home would also be among the top candidates. Today, all of us here at PrecisionCraft would like to reflect on the evolution of the log home, from the first pioneered cabin to today’s luxury structures.

Log Cabins of Yesteryear

If the pioneers of the 1700’s could see how log homes have evolved into the 6,000 sq.ft. masterpieces they are today, they would be astounded. For them, building a log home was a necessity, and they were anything but luxurious. Chosen as the prime building material in that time, logs were easily worked with simple tools and could be cut, notched, and stacked into a suitable cabin quickly. Starting out as shelter on the untouched lands of the new world, and then spreading with the westward movement, log homes have played a pivotal role in the early American lifestyle.

An Evolving Building Trend

While log cabins of the 17-1800’s were homes built for necessity, a few hundred years later, their purpose changed. From hunting cabins, to seasonal retreats, the uses for a simple 4-wall log cabin began to broaden as more and more people began to see these homes as a relaxing, escape to nature from everyday life. Building systems also began to change, making these structures more solid and secure. It was from this point that the idea of the log cabin vacation home really began to take root.

The Mountain-Style Log Home

In more recent years, we have seen the evolution continue. In the past, 4-walled wood structures were the norm, now the mountain-style has evolved in size, complexity, and materials. Building systems have been created that address the age-old issue of log settling. Architects are consistently finding new ways to create dynamic, multi-level floor plans that have never been thought of before, with specific designs for specialty spaces like mud rooms, theater rooms, and even indoor pools. Where once the average home size was less than 1,000 sq.ft., now a home’s square footage is only limited by budget, land, and the client’s imagination. Even the materials used in a home’s construction have changed. Whether it is log or timber, handcrafted or milled, the wood homes of today have all become distinctly unique with these diverse elements.

 

Today is truly an exciting time for the log home. Like many other things in this great country, the leaps and bounds that have been made in this industry are astounding. However, they can only really be appreciated by taking a step back and acknowledging where it all began.

Read: The Evolution of a Mountain-Style Home for more information on this industry’s history.

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