In the 18th century, enslaved African Americans were housed in outlying barns and buildings of the plantation, as well as in the passageways of the manor house. By the 19th century, approximately ten slave cabins were constructed between the ravine and the agricultural fields within partial view of the house.
This cabin would have housed an estimated two dozen slaves. The Plantation owner provided little by way of furnishings, so slaves made clothing, furniture and bedding themselves.
Archaeological excavations at this site uncovered a hidden root cellar, and hundreds of artifacts including buttons tools and pottery.
This cabin was built like typical agricultural buildings constructed between the 1930s and 1850s, but these builders hewed the earthfast posts, flat on one side to prevent the 4 1/2" to 5" thick plank walls from buckling. They drove pegs down through holes drilled vertically into planks to keep them stacked. Chinking (clay & mortar) was added between the planking to protect against weather and bugs.
The windows you see were not original to the cabin and were added after the Civil War. The only light in the building would have been from the open doors, fireplace or from candles. The hard packed floor was covered at one time with a wooden floor that was later removed. The loft had two shuttered openings.