The village earned its name when the Indians of the Six Nations protested the loss of their hunting grounds to European settlers, and the provincial government ordered the squatters' cabins burned as a show of faith to the Native Americans. The Scots-Irish pioneers who came to Fulton County in the 1740s were poaching on Iroquois land that had not been purchased by the government. The settlers, rather than leaving, asked the government to officially buy the land, which it did in 1758. Two eighteenth-century roads, Forbes Road and Three Mountain Road, merged at Burnt Cabins and created a third road, now U.S. 522. While no buildings survive from the earliest era, a group of nineteenth-century buildings, including several inns and stores, define the linear district. The village has a stone house (1790; 34013 U.S. 522), a frame storefront post office (c. 1890; 233 Grist Mill Road), the Burnt Cabins Hotel (c. 1900; 16 Grist Mill Road), and an operating gristmill ( FU9). The village is north of I-76 and south of the south branch of Little Aughwick Creek. The Burnt Cabins Presbyterian Church (1851), at 272 Grist Mill Road on a hillside above the old Forbes Road, is a three-by-three-bay, rectangular, brick structure in a simplified version of the Greek Revival expressed in the returning eaves of the facade. It has a cupola, similar to that on the courthouse in McConnellsburg ( FU1), built simultaneously in the same year. The round-arched, paired windows behind square storm windows light a fairly large single-room sanctuary.
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