“In Edmonton’s early years, milled lumber was in short supply, and so dwellings were often constructed using logs. Early European settlers, along with newcomers from Ontario and the United States, built homes using horizontal log construction with vertical bearing walls and notched corners.

“Since most settlers needed the most practical shelter possible due to limited time, capital, and technical skills, they used horizontal log construction that made use of locally available timber,” wrote Donald G. Weatherell and Irene R.A. Kmet in their book Homes in Alberta. The early 1880s were the heyday for log construction in the region, when most of the homes around Edmonton and Calgary were built that way.

With the coming of lumber mills, the popularity of log dwellings waned, but there were still a few built into the 20th century using techniques handed down from northern continental Europe. Around Edmonton, a smattering of such structures still survive – a link to a building style from the frontier days of the city. […]

Alfred and Marguerite Field House

Made from 20-centimetre-thick logs cut from jack pines near Pigeon lake, this one-storey Highlands-area residence was custom built in 1934 by Stuart Olson for Alfred and Marguerite Field. It took a crew of four men four months to complete the job, overseen by a Swedish carpenter who built some of Canadian National Railway’s log buildings around Jasper.

The Fields paid $4,500 for the custom-built home, with horizontal log construction with vertical log corners, decorative log supports and wood-framed windows. In a neighbourhood of stucco and wood-frame homes, its rustic touches like decorative logs in the front gable and a large fieldstone chimney, made it an instant landmark.

Mr. Field found the “design, warmth and quality of a custom-built log cabin very appealing,” reported a 1978 article in the Edmonton Journal. He owned and operated Field’s Service Station at 12803 Fort Road from 1935 to 1946, and then at 12723 Fort Road from 1947 to 1956. They lived in the home for more than 50 years. […]”