Log Home Inspiration: The McConnell House

Location: Lincoln Way, McConnellsburg, PA (population 1,073)
Date built: ca. 1786

We drive past this pristine 18th century log home every time we visit my parents in Pennsylvania, and it never ceases to inspire me. (You may remember last year's slightly uncanny post about the porch.) Right now I've got my eye on the trim color and how it really makes the windows pop. Though we're using Permachink for our house, I also really like the rare stone and cement chinking used here. I really don't know much about this method, but I like how the meticulously laid stones make this old tavern seem a little more tidy and traditional than your ordinary log cabin. If only they could bury all those messy electrical wires...

In case you're interested, here is the historic description of the McConnell House, according to LivingPlaces.com:

The McConnell House is a four-bay, 2 1/2 story bank log house of the late 18th Century. The main floor entrance story is raised on a stone foundation, a full story high on the south facade. Originally an open wooden porch supported by three square stone piers provided entrance to the first floor level and a covered entrance to the basement. Recent alteration has removed the porch and walled in the two western stone posts with stone and removed the eastern most post. The building is constructed of yellow pine logs with dove-tailed corners, stone and cement chinked, but originally mud and stone. The roofing is asbestos shingles. Originally cedar shingles were used and they still remain under the present roof. The pent eave is probably original to the building...

The first floor interior has much of the original wood detailing. There are two fireplaces on the east wall servicing the south and north rooms. The fireplaces form a single unit joined at the short end. The second floor has been altered in the 19th and 20th Centuries, except for the flooring of the northeast room which is original (late 18th century) and of wide yellow pine.


The city of McConnellsburg is situated on the tract of land granted to Daniel McConnell and William McConnell, by warrant dated 1762, although they had settled in the region by 1750. William sold his share to his brother Daniel, who kept a tavern (the extant building) and who also laid out the city in 1786. Between the warrant date of 1762 and the laying out of the town, 1786 would be appropriate to date the McConnell House (tavern), as there is no specific information to date the structure precisely. By the direct tax of 1798, there are two McConnell houses, one of brick and the tavern building. There is no doubt then that the log house is the earlier and of an 18th Century date. The McConnell House marks the one of the earliest settlements of the area; the residence of the town's founder; while also offering us an excellent example of cut log house construction. Although somewhat altered, the original character and craftsmanship of log construction is still visible. The unique solution to adapting the log house to the slope of the hill results architecturally in an exceptional central Pennsylvania log residence and tavern of the late 18th Century - one with added value to McConnellsburg because the original occupant was Daniel McConnell.

Got a cool log home to share? Email me at thirtyeight20@gmail.com.

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