The Cabin of Peter the Great

Palaces do not capture my imagination, so when I visited St Petersburg, back when it was Leningrad, the beautiful parquet floors of the Winter Palace made the only lasting impression - craftsmanship not size maters.  The cabin, on the other hand, I found memorable.

The log cabin was constructed in three days in May 1703, by Russian soldiers. The design is a traditional Russian countryside house called an izba.  The cabin  covers only 650 sq ft  and contains three rooms - living room, bedroom, and study. It has large ornate windows and a high hipped roof of wooden tiles.  The inside wooden walls were painted with red  oil.  As it was intended to be used only in the summer there are no fire places. It was occupied by the Tsar for five years, while Peter supervised the construction of the new imperial city.

Most Americans want to build a home that resembles Tara or a French palace; I think a log cabin is a much better model.  Humans don't need a 5000 sq ft two story house build of sticks any more than a blue bird needs a nesting box the size of  Peter's cabin. 

An architect friend of mine was engaged to build a  home for another mutual friend and after she continued to enlarge the plan, the frustrated architect finally exclaimed, "S...., there are only so many places you can sit your ass."

                                                     This is the pavilion that contains the cabin  
cabin                         The facade.  
                                                      This is Peter's original desk, or so I was told.  office  
dining room                                        The office ca bin  
                Peter was 6'7" and could bend a horse shoe with his bare hands.