Following their arrival December 19, 1777, the men immediately set to work building huts for shelter. General orders the preceding day specified the size and design of the huts: 14 x 16 feet each, 6½ feet high, a door next to the street and a fireplace in the rear.
Despite the orders, hut size, location, and material varied - as these reconstructions demonstrate. Men from different regions were familiar with different building techniques, a few were skilled craftsmen. A surgeon's mate wrote home, "have one Dull ax to build a Logg Hutt When it will be done knows not."
"And as encouragement to industry and art, the General promises to reward the party in each regiment, which finishes their hut in the quickest, and most workmanlike manner, with twelve dollars." - General Orders December 18, 1777