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Early American Home
And the fun we had building it
CLAUDE H. MILLER
With 60 Illustrations
THOMAS Y. CROWELL COMPANY
Copyright, 1931, By Thomas Y. Crowell Company
Printed in the United States of America by
J. J. LITTLE & IVES COMPANY, NEW YORK
The Early American Home described in the following Pages.
TO MY WIFE AND BOY
This book tells how a reproduction of an early New England, central-chimney farm-house was built in New Jersey — a 1731 model with modern conveniences. We have lived in this house a year. It seems to be a success. That is why I am writing about it. Some people wouldn't like a period house like ours. It might be considered too old fashioned to supply appropriate scenery for fireless cookers and one-piece bathing suits. For the benefit of modernists, the book also attempts to tell how we solved many problems common to the building of any house.
No apology is offered for anything contained here. Nor do we gratefully acknowledge helpful and constructive criticisms from friends, neighbors or in-laws. Most people are indifferent about houses anyway. When one attempts to reproduce the spirit of the homes of our Puritan ancestors in a Main Street atmosphere — with bill boards, hot dog stands and mail-order houses, it is natural to be regarded as a lunatic, probably harmless now, but undoubtedly capable of more violent outbreaks.
Houses of the Colonial period (which means before the Revolutionary War) were practically an uncharted sea to us too, until business compelled me to live in Boston for a year. Therefore, to the early settlers of New England, we offer our undying gratitude for supplying the pattern for a house that, to us, means a real home.
It is some task to write a book in August. The click of a fishing reel or golf club beats a typewriter click a dozen ways. And then there is always that haunting suspicion that no one will buy the book after it is written.
But a man with a mission mustn't coddle himself. He must turn his back on those disturbing inhibitions which rob us of our resolutions. He must be a Spartan for courage and a hound for work.
Besides, this book must be finished, so here goes.
C. H. M.
I. How It All Started
II. An Adventure in House Planning
III. Getting Down to Brass Tacks
IV. First We Make a Paper Model
V. How We Solved the Central Chimney Problem
VI. Housebuilding Is Just One Thrill After Another
VII. You'll Have to Settle These Things
VIII. The Most Important Room in the House
IX. Don't Lose Sight of These Important Details
X. A Thrilling Adventure in Securing a Fireplace
XI. Now for the Grounds and Shrubbery
XII. Grand Rapids or Chippendale — Which?
XIII. The Housewarming
XIV. Now It Can Be Told