Oakley Cabin African American Museum & Park

Oakley Cabin African American Museum & Park

An African American roadside community lived and worked on this historic site from emancipation well into the 20th century. Their culture and traditions heavily influenced those of surrounding communities, and their story is deeply woven into Montgomery County’s rich history. At the center of this site is Oakley Cabin, which was inhabited until 1976 and now serves as a living history museum.

Step inside Oakley Cabin and immerse yourself in the history of those who have lived there. The main room on the ground floor wraps around an open hearth, and in a small adjoining room, 19th-century tools and artifacts are displayed. These items were excavated during archaeological digs around the park’s grounds. The two rooms are divided by a bead board partition wall, and a boxed staircase leads to the upper loft. Archaeologists are currently piecing together evidence in an attempt to date the construction of the cabin.

The 1½-story oak and chestnut log cabin is a reflection of vernacular architecture. The logs are joined with dovetail joints and chinked with stones, now largely covered with cement. The dove-tailed notching and artful pegging represent superb craftsmanship. The rafters on the roof are “bird-mouthed” over the top log that serves as a plate. The floor of the first level sits on a double sill with a notch in the foundation to allow room for two supporting logs – one for the floor and one for the wall.

The cabin sits on a 2-acre tract running along Reddy Bran

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Oakley Cabin African American Museum & Park

3610 Brookeville Road, Olney, MD 20832


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