About The JAG replica Cabin

Abram’s Cabin: James’ father bought 50 acres in Orange Township in 1829 at $2.00 an acre. The cabin was built with help from neighbors and especially the Boynton’s. Mrs. Boynton was Eliza’s sister. The family lived there until 1846 when they built a frame house at another site, the location of which is uncertain.


20′ by 30′ 12′ high in front, 8′ in back
Puncheon floor Three Windows
Unhewn notched logs Spaces between logs filled with mud and clay
Loft with Ladder Chimney of wood and mud rising from the center of the cabin-a puzzle for our

People call this a log cabin, but it was really a log house. Log cabins had no windows and no floors, but Abram’s had a floor and three windows! When settler’s bought land, they would build a log cabin for shelter, until a more substantial dwelling could be built.


Our builder gathes old buildings. Some he rebuilds and some he uses to build new structures. This cabin was built of logs from a horse barn dating from 1830-1840.

Size of this cabin is 20 ft by 30 ft
Logs are WHITE OAK. White Oak is long lasting. All logs have been inspected, cleaned, and sprayed with a preservative. Evidence of hand hewing can be seen, and more hewing was necessary to keep the logs horizontal during reconstruction.
Door and Shutters are CEDAR …also weather resistant.
Floor – Wide POPLAR boards, not puncheon logs. (Puncheon means that a log is cut in half horizontally and placed on the floor cut side up. Today such floors are costly.)
Loft and Ladder – Boys and the teacher slept on mattresses or pallets of straw in the loft.
Three Windows – – Glass. We struggled with this and found that by 1829 oiled paper was not being used. Small panes of glass could be transported safely by horse and wagon without much breakage.
Chimney is not of wood and mud. For safety, the interior is of fire brick and the outside has bield stone. Amish workers did the stonework on the chimney.
Foundation is our invisible insurance against the weather and moisture. First a concrete slab was laid. Stringers were laid on it and those then supported wood underneath the floor. Outside, the concrete edge of the foundation is covered by flat river stone.
Chinking – Perma Chink is a modern product which resembles the mud, clay and straw of filling between logs used in earlier ears. This will not dry and crumble. We have seen some that is pliable after nine years in a reconstructed cabin.
Notching-STEEPLE NOTCHING anchors logs at corners and joints. Hand hewing was necessary to make logs meet and be firm at the corners.

Revised 4/2006 by Margaret Lynch
Moreland Hills Historical Society