Log Construction

While log buildings are often lunped together as a distinctive type of building, there are in fact a variety of different and distinct construction techniques employed in the joining of the logs. At the corner of log buildings the indivual logs may be joined by either a saddle notch or a dove-tailed joint. Saddle notches fit together like a saddle over a horse, with each log having a carved out section so that the logs rest snugly over one another with the round log ends protruding from the corner. Dove-tailed log joints meet to form flush corners with each log fitting into a notched opening carved into the log below. Dove tailing is used in the making of furniture as well to form the corners of wooden cabinets and drawers. Most logs used for building construction have the bark removed and are shaped into a four sided, square ended form. Thus, they present a flat surface which can be covered over with clapboard siding for a more finished look, if desired. Less commonly, the logs are left in round form with the bark attached to present a more rustic look. This is especially true of early 20th century log resort buildings, purposely designed to look rough hewn.


Click the thumbnails for larger images.

Saddle notch

dove-tail joint

Log House, Montgomery County

Log House, Mifflinburg, Union County

Log House, Delaware County