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Willa Cather Foundation - Red Cloud Nebraska (NE)

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Clay Shelving Draws

Clay Shelving Draws

“But for the piece of rusty stovepipe sticking up through the sod, you could have walked over the roof of Ivar’s dwelling without dreaming that you were near a human habitation. Ivar had lived for three years in the clay bank, without defiling the face of nature any more than the coyote that had lived there before him had done.” —O Pioneers!

Clay draws are examples of land formations used to provide initial shelter for the pioneer families. A cave type structure was often dug into the side of the hill with a sod house added on the expanded front entry.