By Cathy Callopy
We know this log building was constructed in 1841 because we have the letter from James Dinsmore’s brother, John, explaining he was in the process of putting the logs up for it. This is where all the cooking for the family, the slaves, and the farm laborers was completed. James Dinsmore had this outdoor kitchen constructed for two reasons: a fear that it would burn down and an unwillingness to endure hot summer days inside the main house with a fire going almost constantly. We believe this log building also housed a spinning wheel and a small loom. James Dinsmore hired a local man to come out and weave coverlets and floor coverings on the Dinsmore loom. This building may also have been where Nancy Mcgruder lived when she was first brought to Kentucky. In the 1840s, cooking began early in the morning with the preparation of biscuits or bread at sunup. The main meal of the day, dinner, was generally served around one or two o’clock in the afternoon. Supper, particularly in the hot summer months, often consisted of cold leftovers. On a warm summer day, the family likely ate dinner on the back gallery of the house, while the workers would have had their meals delivered to the fields.