Here’s a really nice example of the Norwegian-American one room house. The house was built around 1865 and lived in till about 1930. It’s small- just 13.5′ x 17′. The logs extend about six inches short of waist high. It’s a pretty crude little building and sits way high up on the ridge. The logs that carry the joists of the second floor were spliced and lap-joined. They’re pretty important timbers, or at least ones you wouldn’t want to splice together given the fact the second floor rests on them entirely. But it’s held up well. The fact that the house sits way high up on the landscape probably explains the use of short, gnarly timbers. Take note of the roof. The roof originally had a ridgepole, which was removed at some point. See the butts of the old ridgepole? And also notice the dovetailing of the stair treads into their frames. I’ve seen dovetailing like this done quite often in Norwegian-American houses. And I also frequently see it in keys driven into vertical board doors.