Protection and Insulation
Wood shingles were attached to the roof to protect the Vance house from the elements. In the 1790s, shingles were frequently made from oak, and hand-split using a froe. This created shingles of a similar, but irregular, shape and size. The shingles would also need to be replaced constantly.
When the Vance house was reconstructed, the shingles were again hand-split oak but given a weatherproofing treatment similar to that of the siding. The shingles were laid in a style called shingle fashion. When it was time to replace those shingles, Historic Site craftsmen chose to use machine-cut cedar instead.
Dovetailing naturally left spaces between the log siding. That space was filled with a mixture called daubing. This provided the cabin with insulation from the elements. In the winter, settlers in the 1790s would frequently add more daubing to their cabin, and in the summer, they would frequently add less daubing. This provided a measure of heating and cooling.
In the 1790s, daubing was made with a clay mixture. Workers reconstructing the Vance house used cement daubing, rather than clay, because they believed it to be stronger and more durable.