News Release


Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Committee


Donald Breininger, Weisenberg-Lowhill Historical Society      Richard Klase, Stone Mason-Historic House Restorer  

John Fasolka, Allentown Parks Department Superintendent     Steve Long, The Shelter House Society

Sharon Haas, Upper Lehigh Historical Society                         Bruce Mordaunt, Hivel und Dahl Preservation Society             

Donald S. Heintzelman, Ornithologist & Author                      Reynold Reinert, Weisenberg Township Administrator

Greg Huber, Past Perspectives                                                                 Willard Snyder, Lynn-Heidelberg Historical Society

Charles Kiernan, Lower Macungie Twp. Historical Society      Noreen Yamamoto, The Shelter House Society


For Release: September 5, 2007                               Contact: Donald S. Heintzelman



Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Being Created


            The Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Committee announced today it is engaged in research and field work leading to the creation of a Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail—the first for Lehigh County, and perhaps all of Pennsylvania.

            When completed in approximately one year, and open to the public, it will be a significant new historic tourism attraction for Lehigh County. It will augment and compliment existing historic attractions within the county, and produce added economic benefits for local communities in Lehigh County.

            In addition, by focusing on our remaining authentic log buildings, it is hoped there will be increased public appreciation for these charming old buildings, and educational opportunities associated with log cabins and other log buildings will be better utilized by schools within Lehigh County.

            A portion of the northern part of the log cabin trail in Lynn, Heidelberg, and Washington townships also overlaps the internationally important Kittatinny Raptor Corridor where major autumn raptor migrations annually occur along the famous Kittatinny Ridge (Blue Mountain) in these three townships and are major birding and ecotourism attractions in Lehigh and adjacent counties.

            The idea for creation of a Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail was presented in an Opinion piece written by ornithologist and author Donald S. Heintzelman of Zionsville, and published on May 28, 2007 in The Morning Call.

            Since then, a 12-member Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Committee was established. It consists of representatives from six local historical societies, plus a few additional people with expert knowledge about log buildings in Lehigh County and beyond. Eventually all local historical societies in Lehigh County, as well as certain other historical organizations and tourism agencies, will be invited to participate in promotion and use of the Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail.

            Currently, the committee is researching information about all known log barns, cabins, houses, and other buildings remaining in Lehigh County. It is from this information that the committee will determine which buildings will be included on the final Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail.

            No such comprehensive information for Lehigh County existed prior to the establishment of this project. As of August 31st, there were 60 18th and 19th century authentic log buildings identified. Some of these buildings, however, are covered with siding and their true log construction is not visually obvious whereas others have all or some of their logs exposed to the outside. Many of the latter are located in public parks throughout Lehigh County, and are owned by municipal governments or non-profit organizations. Others are owned privately. Only a select number of the privately owned buildings will be included on the Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail.

            The Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Committee is asking the public to notify it of any 18th and 19th century authentic log buildings it knows about—especially if it is believed information about a particular building is not already known to committee members.

            Information can be e-mailed to Donald S. Heintzelman at who will forward it to members of the Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Committee. Please include your complete name, postal mailing address, telephone number, and e-mail address when responding to this request for log building information in Lehigh County. 




Caption for attached photograph:

The Shelter House, built in 1734, is the oldest continually occupied building in Lehigh County, PA. This log structure is located on South Mountain in Emmaus. It is on the National Register of Historic Places. Photo courtesy of the Lehigh County Log Cabin Trail Committee.