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George McGregor Cabin

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1938. Left bank of Yukon River, approximately 2 miles downriver from Coal Creek
  • George McGregor Cabin

A one-room log cabin in a remote setting, the George McGregor cabin is a good example of a solitary trapper's cabin. Measuring 12 feet by 13 feet, the one-story cabin could have been built by one person. The walls are constructed of round logs, unpeeled but hewn slightly on the interior, saddle notched at the corners. The floor had rough-sawn planks on poles; there was a small root cellar in the center. The gable roof was constructed of round poles running perpendicularly to the ridgepole. On top of these was a layer of sod, which supported a plank roof and tar paper. The ridgepole extended in front to support corrugated metal that covered a porch. Although no stove remains, there is a stovepipe. Outbuildings included two caches and the ruins of another cabin or tent frame.

In the 1920s, George McGregor was a prospector, staking claims on Woodchopper Creek and a tributary, Mineral Creek. In the mid-1930s, he sold out to Gold Placers, Inc., and turned to trapping. He built this cabin in 1938, probably using it as his home base during the winters, and also constructed other cabins on his trap line. Dogs were his means of transport in the winter, and in summer he caught fish to feed them, using this cabin as his fish camp. In 1954, McGregor moved to Eagle, where he held several elective offices before leaving Alaska in 1963.

This basic log cabin is probably little different from the cabins of the 1898 gold stampeders. Its one-room plan and indigenous materials, characteristic of the frontier, are enduring.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Alison K. Hoagland
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Citation

Alison K. Hoagland, "George McGregor Cabin", [Central, Alaska], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/AK-01-IN048.

Print Source

Buildings of Alaska, Alison K. Hoagland. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 245-246.

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