Self-Guided Tour of Lincoln-era Log Cabin Village - continued Created: 04/20/2020 -2-
Rail Fences and Logs for Log Cabins
Rail Fences kept the tame animals in and the wild animals out. Rails were made from trees cut down with an axe or saw and then cut into logs 6 to 8 feet long. An axe with a flat end on one end was used to drive chisels (wood or metal) into the log in various places to split it. They could get 6 to 8 rails out of a single log. Rails were stacked in a line with the ends crossed. Lincoln was well known as a rail splitter.
1854 Log Corn Crib was built by the Niere Family to store Corn to feed the animals during the winter. The Corn wagon located here, was used to transport corn from the field to the Corn Crib. This wagon has steel wheels made by Electric Wheel - the fore runner to Titan Wheel. It was pulled by two horses. Pioneers would have walked along each side hand picking the corn and tossing it into the wagon. The full corn wagon was then driven between the two cribs and the corn shoveled into the Crib on the right. Gaps left between the logs, allowed air to flow into the corn, so it would dry out and wouldn't spoil. Small upright boards, placed at the bottom, keep the corn from rolling out.
Log Church "Lord's Cabin" was built by the Knights of Columbus in 1977. This Church replicates the first organized church in Quincy called the "Lords Cabin" built in 1832. The first minister, Asa Turner, served as pastor for 7 years. In rural communities, a church was one of the first public buildings erected. Men and boys sat on one side and women and girls sat on the other. Preachers traveled to villages, so in the absence of a preacher, services were led by someone who "had a call" (felt inspired) to preach. If the preacher was not available, a couple wanting to get married would "jump" over a broom in front of fellow villagers to signify they were married - till a preacher was available. Churches were also used as schools, meeting places and the local court house during the week, till other buildings were built.
1800's Log Cabin School - The Fraser Log Cabin, was built in 1828 (a photo is on the Friends web site at: http://www.logcabinvillagequincyil.com/album320191227c_013.htm). This cabin will be re-built in June 2020. It was originally a Stage Coach Stop on the way to Ursa, IL from Quincy. When it was moved to the village, it was used as a log cabin school with only one classroom for grades 1-8. Scholars (students) sat on hard benches made from logs split in half with no backs. The toilet was a shed located outside, called an outhouse. Schoolmaster (man teacher) or Schoolmarm (lady teacher) taught scholars of all ages. It was called a "Blab School" because some scholars recited lessons out loud while other scholars completed their work. There were very few books. Scholars wrote on slates with chalk, so they could be erased and reused. School was mainly taught in the Winter, when crops were not being planted or harvested. Class began with a patriotic song, salute to the flag followed by a scripture reading or prayer. Reading, penmanship (writing), spelling, arithmetic, geography and manners were taught. Abe Lincoln went a total of less than one year in a formal school like this.