A mud-chinked cabin

log cabin

Finding this cabin was another of those blind hog finds acorn, the Lord takes care of fools and drunks moments. Here was a mud-chinked log cabin with no electric service. Yeah buddy!


August 1, 2010 – UPDATE – “Killin’ House”

While shooting another story in the general vicinity, a couple local guys stopped by to chat. Eventually the conversation got around to the cabin you see above. One of my visitors said he knew of the cabin near Grapevine and that it was on “Killin’ House Road.” Further conversation revealed that some years back, a person was killed at the cabin. After that untoward event, the cabin became known as the “Killin’ House” and the road became known as, you guessed it, “Killin’ House Road.”

Had I blinked at the wrong time or had less peripheral vision, I would have missed this fine log cabin in the boondocks near Grapevine, Arkansas. In fact, the glimpse was so fleeting, I had to back up and confirm the sighting.

I happened on the cabin after shooting an old and decrepit country store in nearby Grapevine. See the store and read the store story on the Photo of the Week page at Corndancer dot com. Click here to go there.  We’ll wait here.


back of cabin

The windowless cabin is showing some signs of wear, but for the most part, is in good condition. The tin roof is pulling loose in a couple of places and there's a bit of rot here and there along the bottom logs, but judging by the "any port in a storm," standard, the old structure would be a welcome respite in untoward weather conditions. And four walls between you and hungry critters.

The cabin is receiving some attention since the encroaching woods have not completely devoured it. Trees and underbrush have a voracious appetite for real estate, so someone is keeping the clearing, well, clear. Would that I could meet this soul and learn the rest of the story. And oh yes, the front door, about shoulder height to me is also the emergency exit.


Mud chinked

Mud chinked logs are a traditional and effective method of keeping the weather outside where it should be kept. It also has the benefit of offering dirt daubers a condo location. The wasps are generally benevolent in their deportment toward mankind. Even better, they look on Black Widow Spiders as their preferred snack. What a friend we have in dirt daubers.

If you are not familiar with the term, “chinking,” it is the process of filling the horizontal gaps between logs with some sort of material to seal the wall. Mud was the traditional medium for this process. Modern versions of log cabins, use more sophisticated materials. While I suspect this is a twentieth century structure, the building methods were traditional, including chinking with good ol’ mud. And the dirt daubers love it.

tree falls on roof

While we have determined that the cabin does get some attention, it hasn't been lately, or the attention giver was not up to moving this small tree across the roof. Bet that tree made a hair-raising retort when it crashed onto that tin roof. The gravel road is in the background.

The cabin was a great discovery, but only if you think finding an intact log cabin in the boondocks is a good thing. If you don’t, get counseling.

Been there, shot that

Mean time, to add a bit of spice to life, I have included probably one of  the most well-shot locations in the lower 48, to wit: St. Louis Cathedral on Chartres Street off Jackson Square in NOLA, New Orleans, Louisiana. This was snapped in April 2009 while the city was still stretching and yawning.

St. Louis Cathedral, New Orleans

Andy Jackson and St. Louis Cathedral are one of the most familiar visual combinations of modern times. This setup is a favorite of newsmen and politicians.


But wait, there’s more.

See all of the Corndancer and Weekly Grist pictures in glorious high resolution, including a black and white version of each picture. Click here to go there!

Thanks for dropping by,

Joe Dempsey

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