Whole historic log cabin found inside house during demolition

A whole log cabin dating to the Civil War or immediate antebellum period was discovered inside an existing house that was being demolished in Prescott, Arkansas. The 18 x 20-foot cabin was kept whole and encapsulated with new siding between 1953 and 1955 when it was moved entire to its current location on Greenlawn Street.

Property records indicate the log cabin originally built on Miller Hill on land belonging to one John Vaughn. The records would suggest it dates to 1850s or 1860s and the timbers are roughly hand-hewn, which dates them to before the arrival of the railroad and the mill-sawn timber it brought to the area in the 1870s. Miller Hill was next to the 30-square-mile plain that as of April 12th, 1864, would become known as the Prairie D’Ane battlefield, now part of the Camden Expedition Sites National Historic Landmark. This log cabin could well have been mute witness to the Union victory at Prairie D’Ane. An archaeologist has been enlisted to authenticate the building and date it as precisely as possible.

Demolition is obviously no longer on the cards. The Nevada County Depot & Museum has acquired the log cabin thanks to a donation from local residents Dr. Michael and Bo Young. The museum plans to dismantle the cabin piece by piece, number each timber, conserve and stabilize them and store them until the structure can be reconstructed on the Prairie D’Ane Battlefield. A new visitors center will be built at the site in the next couple of years. The log cabin will be reassembled inside the new building to keep it safe from the elements and open to visitors.


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Comment by Trevor
2019-11-22 03:12:50

The ‘smoking gun’ as to whether it was built before the battle might be in whether it has any bullet holes. ;)

Comment by SgtBob
2019-11-22 15:22:14

In Red River County, Texas, are two 1842 log cabins covered by sawn planks and part of one in Bowie County. One in Red River County is the oldest house in Texas continuously occupied by the same family.

Comment by Patti Genack
2019-11-22 21:51:20

Well, the west undoubtedly has lots of these cabins hidden under newer construction, or not. There are lots of cabins still being lived in or kept repaired just in Southern Colorado alone. Here is another one that was part of the divided ranch that Charles Goodnight (THE Goodnight) became an owner of. Peter Dotson bought his part of the Nolan Land Grant in the 1872. I know there is a series of photos of the cabin being revealed as the 1950’s remodel was torn away. You can find articles by googling Dotson Ranch, Beulah, Colorado

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