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Wilderness Homes
A Book of the Log Cabin by Oliver Kemp (1908)


IF you love the out-of-doors, this book was written for you, to crystallize and bring into reality that vague longing which you have felt for a lodge in the wilderness. Somewhere the trail has led you to the ideal spot in the deep forest, by the shores of a smiling lake or within sound of the murmuring waters.

Wherever you may choose to dwell in the woods, there will be found abundant material for a log cabin, and a day's work will bring results big with pleasure and healthy enjoyment, for even the temporary sojourner in the wilderness cannot turn to better employment than that which will give him a home of his own handiwork.

This you will own with a new sense of proprietorship that hitherto you have not known. Work of your hands, your pride in its possession will increase with the improvements suggested by its occupancy from year to year.

We have purposely avoided the elaborate log structures, which by courtesy are called camps, for they are beyond the ability of the amateur to construct, had he ever so much time at his command. When you desire something more than is here shown, consult an architect, and for the building of it, by all means "let" the job.

The designs which are given have all been built and allow of numberless alterations to suit the whims and requirements of the builder. This much you are sure of: from the first your cabin will have the charm of a home, it will nestle among the trees like a real companion of the forest, though nature must have a few seasons in which to "creep up to the doorsill and wipe away the scars of man's hasty building."

The methods of construction given are those of a thorough workman, though the operations may be greatly curtailed, especially in the smaller camps. A perusal of even the elaborate building directions will by no means daunt you. To have your home in the woods only two things are necessary, the time and the will.

In my own experience I have often wished for such a book as this, and I feel fortunate indeed in the friendship of Air. D. L. Annis, of Sebec, Maine, to whose interested and practical tutoring I owe my knowledge of Log Cabin building.

Some years ago I contributed a couple of articles (which are incorporated in this book) on the subject to the magazine Field and Stream. The instant response indicated a need for the information contained herein. For that reason these pages were written during my leisure time in the woods and I send them out tried and tested.

Not the least important part of the book are the photographs, and in this connection I must acknowledge with pleasure my indebtedness for the valuable help afforded me by Mr. Harrie B. Coe, of Portland, Maine; Hon. Carter Harrison, of Chicago; Mr. George W. Kirkner, of New York; Mr. N. W. McNaughton, of Schoodic, and Mr. M. J. Marr, of Indian River, Maine, in supplying many of the photographs of their delightful Wilderness homes.


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