Elisha Douglas built this cabin about five miles out in Lawrence County from the village of Sontag in 1858. He raised his family in it, 11 children in all. But over time of course, they all moved on and had children of their own and the family spread and grew down through the generations, and the land where the cabin stood changed hands through the years, out of the family, to owners who didn't really have any special attachment to the old cabin.
Reese Furlow: From time to time relatives would come and want to visit the cabin and he didn't really like the liability of having the people on his property so he wanted it moved and we moved it.
Walt: That's Reese Furlow who lives in Rankin County. He's one of Elisha Douglas' descendents. They took the porches off the cabin and saved the brick from the chimney and hauled it all to a lot in Sontag, within a few miles of where Elisha is buried. They've been working on the cabin just about a year, now, and have it in pretty good shape.
Reese Furlow: Over the years it's had some alterations and we've tried to put it back the way it was. We've tried to salvage as much of the material and use as much of the original material in restoring it as possible. And where we had to buy material to restore it we bought rough sawed lumber from the local saw mills and used what would be the closest thing to the original materials that went into the cabin.
Walt: The dovetails where the handhewn logs are joined at the corners are cut in a way that water runs away from the joint in every direction. And Reese says one hole cut through the original log in the back wall of the cabin puzzles him. Can't figure out what it could have been used for.
It's a peaceful little cabin put back as close to what it would have originally looked like when the family's patriarch, Elisha Douglas built it. Reese says it will be used as a family museum and a gathering place for the family and members of the community, too. And this being November and Thanksgiving coming up, I'd imagine the place of the humble origins of the now large family will be visited even more, now that it's accessible again.
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