Kemper Stone Kitchen

The Kemper Stone Kitchen is a replica of the original Kemper kitchen, reconstructed according to the detailed plans described in the Remembrances of Helen Kemper Blinn . This type of kitchen has been referred to as a stone kitchen, hearth kitchen; and, later in the century, a summer kitchen.

The kitchen was built as a separate building from the Kemper Log House for a variety of reasons, the most important being safety, as the constant activity around the hearth caused many a kitchen to catch fire and burn down. It was also common to have a separate building for cooking as this arrangement kept the heat of the kitchen from the living quarters, particularly in the summer.

The ceiling consists of wooden beams intentionally left exposed in order to hang items, like herbs, for drying. There is a low-ceilinged upper floor where several of the Kemper boys slept. The Kemper Kitchen has a large fireplace and stone hearth which were used for cooking. The fireplace is equipped with an iron crane which could swing over the flames, usually used for boiling. A kettle for hot water might hang on the crane.

The most versatile utensil a cook could have was a Dutch oven. Like most hearth cooking utensils, a Dutch oven has legs so that it can stand on top of a bed of hot coals pulled out onto the hearth. Additional coals were added on top of this cast iron implement. A Dutch oven can be used to cook just about every kind of food from meats to vegetables, rice, beans, corn bread and apple crisp.

Other kitchen utensils include a griddle, iron pots, skewers, and skillets. The Kemper Kitchen also boasts a beehive oven, a large brick oven used for baking bread, pies, biscuits and other baked items. The baking day took place usually once a week, due to the large amount of wood it took to heat the structure.

The Kemper Stone Kitchen is owned by
The National Society Colonial Dames Of America In The State Of Ohio