As the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. This is a true story for Richard Aiken, whose creative and building talent proved that even an old half-destroyed cabin in the woods can be turned into a cozy and almost luxurious place. This outstanding 65-year-old man is a father, a husband, an opera singer, an author, and seems like a great builder, who has two PhDs!
For years the man had been dreaming to live in a log cabin in the woods. He kept looking but everything he ran across was either unsuitable or too expensive. Until one day, he was offered an old run-down log cabin in Missouri for free.
When Aiken did a little research, he found that the property had probably been built in the 19th century.
Research in the Hartville County courthouse (Wright county) revealed the land was originally given to a Mr. Hudson in 1833 as a land grant. We speculate that the cabin was built soon thereafter, although there is no written record.
Nevetherless, Aiken insisted on paying $100 for it, and got down to work together with his family. The cabin was completely rotten. It had been practically destroyed since 1990’s, so Richard and his family had to start restoring it practically from scratch.
They chose a perfect spot, on a bank of a forest lake, to transfer the cabin. Each log and piece of wood was numbered and documented in order not to lose or confuse anything. The family even dug out an artificial lake out of natural spring nearby.
They built a dock on the lake and then reconstructed the cabin, log by log. Richard also added a basement, a roof, and a nice porch.
The transformation was stunning not just from outside. The interior boasts with a brick fireplace and wooden stairs, made of logs from the fallen tree, which adds the rustic charm to the place. The doors and the frames were handmade by a professional carpenter.
White oak was used for the floor joists, shingles were made from split cedar. The home is filled with natural light during the day and the candle chandelier helps to light up the place during the night.
It took Aiken 10 years to completely restore this place. But it was totally worth it! If you enjoyed reading this, please, consider sharing this article with your friends.
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