The granite foundation
The Hostel building is a three story timber framed house, inspired by the Boardman House in Saugus, Massachusetts built around 1687
The house sits on a granite stone root cellar, built with 40 cubic yards of stones from the property and the local area. The stones were all moved and split on site by the use of hand tools.
Five species of wood have been used in the construction, all of it harvested or gathered from the hostel property or nearby. All the wood work was done with concern for the surrounding life, for example the largest spruce timbers used were already blown down at harvest.
The building, July 2009
Most of the work has been done using hand tools, an important factor in the process. The idea is not only to have a building that looks in keeping with the New England colonial period, but also that it is constructed with tools and building techniqes common to that time.
The construction process of that time is also what we today would call "natural building". For example, the house contains passive solar heating and no running water; it will be heated with wood and the cellar will function as winter food storage, all which sums up to a total energy independence.
In September 2007, the timber frame was raised. The entire frame of the house (15x35x3 floors) is traditionally joined with hand split wooden pegs and mortise and tenon joinery.
All of the windows and doors are handmade by traditional methods using local or salvaged materials. The hardware for the doors and windows was designed based on colonial examples and forged on Deer Isle by Ian Walker, a very good friend of the Hostel. The paint used on the hostel is from a Swedish manufacturer, Allbacks, who make non-toxic linseed oil paints that outperform modern paint.
With this homegrown mix of old English style and natural building methods the hostel will both intrigue, teach and inspire. We hope that all the hard work and energy that has gone in to this project will benefit many people in many ways.
If you're interested in knowing more about this please contact us!