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The sod roof on The Jackson Hole and Greater Yellowstone Visitor Center is symbolic of our Western heritage. The classic western sod home was prevalent in pioneer plains country after the Civil War. Pioneer settlers used sod because it was the most available if not the only bulding material available.

The sod was cut with plows and spades into section about 12 inches wide by 18 inches long and two to four inches thick. Forming crude rafters with branches and covering them with supporting materials such as sunflower stalks, willow boughs or straw, they then laid sod strips across this to form a roof.

Leaving something to be desired, these roofs frequently leaked so badly that the pioneers hung small tents over thier beds! The redeeming value of the sod roof is its warmth in the winter and coolness in the summer. And, of course, it could be built quickly at no cost.

Our sod roof is built with modern materials and has only one trivial leak that fewer thn a dozen know about. In the summer it is covered with native wildflowers and NEEDS NO MOWING.

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