Cherokee Winter Home
Indian Country Today
A recently completed ‘winter home’ was constructed inside the Cherokee Heritage Center’s Ancient Village.
These homes served Cherokee families in the early 18th century survive the harsh winters of the Cherokee’s eastern lands. A fire pit in the center of the house provided the heat the Cherokees needed as they gathered around it to share stories. Two pilot homes that were recently finished at Heritage Center will serve as models for a pair of eight that will be added.
The wood used was consistent with wood that was present in Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina. The winter home Cherokees lived in was usually 25 feet in diameter with a large amount of dirt packed around the base.
The Cherokee Phoenix reported that when completed, the entire completed village will have 13 stations for demonstrations like basket weaving and canoe making, with winter and summer council townhouses built. There will also be an orchard, a plaza, gardens, a ball field and a recirculating stream. Plants and trees important to Cherokee people will also be planted, including river cane.