Sod House Living
Sod houses, or "soddies", were the first homes of many settlement groups on the prairies. Pieces of prairie grassland were cut and stacked, grass-side down, like interlocking bricks. The roots grew, joining the bricks, making sturdy walls. Walls were sometimes plastered over and painted with whitewash. Sod houses had dirt floors and the roof leaked when it rained. The roof was a layer of branches topped with sod. Thatch or shingles were also used. The room was sometimes divided by hanging a curtain or blanket. Not much privacy! Sod houses, dug into the ground for warmth, were also used by the Inuit.
For more on sod houses, check out the Books and Links section.