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Cape Cod Housing Problem

The early Cape houses varied greatly, according to men’s means, and became more elaborate from generation to generation as buildings improved.

The hasty structures that some of the pioneers erected were never intended to be more than makeshifts to provide temporary shelter until the owner could build something more suitable. These buildings, often called booths, were not frame houses at all.

The walls consisted of two parallel rows of saplings with the space between filled with clay and stones. Slanting poles covered with the longest marshgrass served as a roof, and the fireplace was topped by a chimney built of green sticks lined with clay. Oiled paper covered the windows. There was no floor—unless one could call dry thatch spread on the ground a floor. The only virtue these buildings had was the fact that they could be put together in a hurry and at no expense. But one winter in such a home was enough to convince any pioneer that he must have a real house.

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Posted by Cape Cod - (website) on 05/08/06
Categories: HistoryHouses
Keywords: architecture, cape cod house, history


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