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Discussion Starter #1
There is a log cabin on the neighbors property in Greene Co. that is said to have been built in 1803.... Looking at the wood it looks like it was shaved down by an axe or some kind of tool.



Also what wood do you think it is?
 

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Axe marks when they "squared" the logs. If its that old then they r probably american chestnut, but i would have no idea how old it really is. Very cool though!
 

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Shaped by an adze or adz, was chestnut popular in that area, it was used heavily around here for log building..
 

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Squared up the logs with a broad axe or an adz. I would also have to guess American Chestnut. You can start to narrow down the age of the building if the logs were determined to be chestnut. It's amazing how long a structure will last if the roof of the building is kept in shape. I also read once where windows were put in building at that height to let light in and to make it more difficult for outside entry.
 

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200 years? I would think termites and carpenter bees and just natural wood rot would have taken it down by now. Very cool old building though!
 

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My guess, and it's only a guess, is that it is not completely original. If there were any original in an 1803 cabin/shack left to the elements with no real upkeep, in 2014, I would say it would be very little. That's over 210 years. There would be no roof left, and there is absolutley no way the exterior wood would still be that tight, not to mention all of the "chinking" still in order. The elements are much too harsh. Sometimes, you will still find original Oak type beams in old structures with adz marks, but that's about it for original wood.

My guess, probably built as a repro (look-alike) mid last century, 1940's, 50's, 60's ? That or, HEAVILY refurbished around that time.
 

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Oh, by the way. Check the mud/chinking. Pull a small piece, break it open, and se if there is animal coat mixed in. Horse hair, Mule, etc.... That will give you an idea of age also. It would REALLY be a restoration if somebody mimmicked the horse-hair type chinking.

... and another by the way. My brother-in-law and I replaced a church stoop entrance roof using the old practice of "Mortise and Tenon". I was younger than he, so guess who got all the chisel work ?
We used Poplar beam blanks. Poplar is a softer kind of wood, but made it easier on the chiseling. My guess is that the roof structure we were replacing wasn't even original (maybe mid/late 1800's), we used a Black kind of stain-paint on it. It would certainly look old and rustic today to the untrained eye, but that old church has a front stoop roof from 1982.


..... and, is that an elecrical box with wire on lower left ? mebbe not. Would be a good place for a metal detector.
 

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The logs are squared using both a broad axe and an adz. The broadaxe cuts down to a line and then an adz is used to pry off the chips. The corner joining is peculiar. I have seen six or so different styles and this one is not like the others. Normally all cuts sloped downward and away from the interior corner to direct driven rain away from the depth of the notches. Such cabins can last a very long time with sufficient over hanging roofs to keep the walls relatively dry. Many times the logs were covered with clapboard siding which further protected the logs from weather. There is an old log barn outside Felton PA and the interior log partititions are said to date to the late 1790's. The exterior walls were replaced with post and beam over a century ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yes they ran electric in it and someone put a metal roof on it a long time ago.
Last summer an older couple stopped in to look at it. They live in Ohio and told me they used to live in it in the early 70's.
The land and the cabin was owned by an old man from Waynesburg. They told me he said that's the year it was built.
The chinking is almost gone except where someone made an attempt to restore it along the line. It's starting to get in rough shape. I wish I owned it so I could restore it to its former condition!
Someone broke in it last year so I contacted the neighbor and told him we would fix the door because he is never there. We asked if we could check it out. He said no problem.
The floor is caving in and you can see daylight everywhere where the mud is gone when you look at the walls....like I said before it's really in bad shape.
 

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Yes they ran electric in it and someone put a metal roof on it a long time ago.
Last summer an older couple stopped in to look at it. They live in Ohio and told me they used to live in it in the early 70's.
That would explain why it still appears to be in fair shape. My guess is it had a decent amount of upkeep at various times throughout the years. Leaning less now towards a repro build, but yet a very old, but somewhat maintined through the years shack. Appears the steps even have "stringers" which would be a more modern touch.

Bet a dollar to a donut the "old" folks you talked to were "hippies". That shack just screams of being inhabited by a hippie couple.
 
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