The Innovation of Early Homesteaders
This sod house is a replica of one built at this site by Kenneth Pelren and Segard Anderson in 1930. Clay soil held together by a tenacious root system was plowed from the prairie and stacked in a manner similar to modern brick construction. This type of construction was typical of housing used by homesteaders on the treeless plains. The sod construction offered warmth in the winter, cooler temperatures in the summer and would not burn.
The Nebraska National Forest constructed this replica in 1984, and continues the upkeep so future generations can view a glimpse of the past.
A grasshopper plow was used to break the sod into strips 12 inches wide and
4 inches thick. The farmer used a spade to cut the strips into three-foot lengths
(bricks) before they were loaded onto a wagon and taken to the site of the sod
Erected by Forest Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Agriculture • Architecture • Settlements & Settlers. A significant historical year for this entry is 1930.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 15 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Grassroots (within shouting distance of this marker); Africa in Nebraska (within shouting distance of this marker); Landscape in Layers (within shouting distance of this marker); Yellow Hand Monument (approx. 8.6 miles away); Battle of Warbonnet Creek Monument (approx. 8.8 miles away); Officers’ Row, 1909 (approx. 14.1 miles away); Buffalo Soldiers at Fort Robinson (approx. 14.2 miles away); Adobe Officers’ Quarters (approx. 14.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Harrison.
Credits. This page was last revised on May 29, 2021. It was originally submitted on May 26, 2021, by Connor Olson of Lemmon, South Dakota. This page has been viewed 42 times since then. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on May 26, 2021, by Connor Olson of Lemmon, South Dakota. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.