You might be wondering what the difference is between a log cabin and a log home, or you might even already know.
They seem to be getting more and more popular as a home style for not just the outdoorsy type anymore, and with reason. Log homes are often breathtaking in their design. Today, we’re breaking down the log home and its characteristics, alongside its history.
If you watch period television, specifically anything that took place in early America, you might notice that the homes look a lot like cabins. For over 500 years, log homes sheltered those who needed it. Pilgrims who came to America built homes from the trees and logs around them, and the style has stuck. While it’s hard to pinpoint the origin of these homes, it is believed that the home-style came to North America in the 1600s when the Finnish came and brought their home-building practices from their land, and that style was seen in their home and saunas.
To build a traditional log cabin, a foundation of rocks is laid down to keep the logs off of damp soil. There is at least one window, a stone fireplace, and a smooth dirt and gravel floor. These original log cabins were built without the use of nails and could be built in a matter of a few days if the timber was available. Notches would be cut into the ends of logs with an ax, and those notches would interlock.
The roofs were often made from wood as well and some featured green roods, as seen in the above photo. People used what was around them to build their homes, including oak, maple, cedar, and more. Repairs were made with horsehair and moss, and later with clay and mortar. Before glass, windows were just openings covered with oiled paper, animal skins, or boards that closed.
Today, they feature every luxury you can imagine. They are spacious and available in a multitude of designs.
Other than being made from logs and wood, a log home has very distinct characteristics. Featuring modern amenities—including cable, heating, air conditioning, and more—log homes are much more comfortable than those lived in by our ancestors.
Size is the main component that makes a log home stand apart from a log cabin. Log cabins are meant to be an escape while log homes are made to be permanent dwellings today.
Some styles feature metal roofs and stone siding, while others boast beautiful stone pillars and stretches of glass to let in natural lights. When compared to the 100% log structures with one window of the past, it’s clear that much has changed over time. Still, the classic element is predominantly evident in these log homes: logs and wood.
They come in all shapes and sizes and are not confined to the one-floor homes of the past. Customization makes each log home different and they are made to suit your taste and lifestyle.
Log homes bring a classic feel to your home that can connect you more to nature and bring peace to your life, or can feature all the modern amenities you’d find in any other style home while giving your home a fun atmosphere.
Kayleigh is a content writer with a BA in technical writing/literature and an MA in creative writing. When she’s not at work writing, she’s at home writing, reading, or binge-watching television shows… for research, of course. A big do-it-yourselfer and crafter, Kayleigh loves testing out projects and gifting them to friends and family—all in preparation for when she owns her own home one day and decorates with her own personal creations. Her work has appeared on The Writing Cooperative and as an Honorable Mention in East Meets West American Writers Review.