Sod Room, Not Sod House, Keeps Cool in Summer, Warm in Winter

While not a sod house, one-room block house is expanded using sod.

| Good Old Days

When we came to our homestead in Barton County, Kansas, 76 years ago, there was a little one-room block house on our place with a roof of brush and hay. Father had to get a neighbor to make the long trip to town to get some lumber for a roof.

While our home wasn’t a sod house, Father built on a room made out of sod. Always that room was nice and warm in winter and cool and pleasant in summer. Every stick of furniture we had was made by my father. He made a bedstead, a table, a chair for Mother, and a bench for us children.

Later there was an extra little room where we kept corn for the hogs and chickens. My brothers had to sleep on top of the corn! We lived this way for 10 years before we could afford to build a stone house.

Father had a team of oxen, and Mother had to go along when he plowed to lead them. In winter, it took one person's full time to cut the cornstalks and sunflower stalks to feed the fire. My mother refused to use prairie coal (cow chips).

We children had to walk 2 1/2 miles to school, and our lunch usually was a piece of bread and some fat bacon. But we all grew up to be strong and work hard, and every single one of us reached our 70s.

Louisa Wondra
Odin, Kan.

Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019


Next: April 27-28, 2019
Asheville, N.C.

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe today

Capper's FarmerWant to rediscover what made grandma’s house the fun place we all remember? Capper’s Farmer — the newly restored publication from the rural know-how experts at — updates the tried-and-true methods your grandparents used for cooking, crafting, gardening and so much more. Subscribe today and discover the joys of homemade living and homesteading insight — with a dash of modern living — that makes up the new Capper’s Farmer.

Save Even More Money with our automatic renewal savings plan!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our automatic renewal savings plan. You save an additional $6 and get 4 issues of Capper's Farmer for only $16.95 (USA only).

Or, Bill Me Later and I'll pay just $22.95 for a one year subscription!

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter

Free Product Information Classifieds