Log Cabins in the Early West
Following the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 and the exploration of western North America by the Lewis and Clark expedition from 1803 to 1806, families left the more crowded eastern states during a period known as the Westward Expansion. During the 1840’s to the 1860’s thousands moved west on the Oregon Trail. Later, the Homestead Act, which became law in 1862, provided individuals and families a means of obtaining free land in the vast western frontier.
Where timber was plentiful, early American pioneers utilized logs for building their homes. Log cabins could be built in a relatively short time and provided a snug shelter that would last until a more permanent frame house could be built.
Further information on this period in history:
The Oregon National Historic Trail, The U.S. National Park Service, Washington, D.C.
The Oregon Trail Interpretive Center, Baker City, Oregon
The Homestead Act, the National Archives, Washington, D.C.
Digital History, University of Houston, Houston, Texas