What do you do with your old newspapers? Do you recycle them, throw them out, or use them to pack away delicate items? If you save 100,000 papers, you might be able to build your own house!
In Rockport, Massachusetts, stands a two-room cabin that's made entirely from newspapers, glue, and varnish. It was built in 1922 by Elis Stenman, a mechanical engineer who needed a cheap building material during the Great Depression. Stenman and his family lived in what is now known as "The Paper House" for six years. After his death in 1942, the house was preserved and turned into a museum.
From a distance, it looks like a regular cabin, but it was constructed using only newspapers, varnish, and homemade glue. The one exception is the chimney, which is made of brick.
Stenman made his own glue by combining water, flour, and apple peels. In some places, the varnish has worn away, revealing newspapers that date back to the early 1920s.
Sometimes, the peeling varnish reveals a snippet of news that's quite peculiar. I would love to know what the rest of this says.
However, the outside of the house isn't the only thing that's made of newspapers. Inside, there are desks, curtains, and a clock that Stenamn crafted by hand with old newsprint.
Some of the newspapers feature historic events, such as Herbert Hoover's presidential campaign and Charles Lindbergh's first transatlantic flight.
Others have been carefully fashioned into tables and chairs. All in all, Stenman estimates that he used 100,000 newspapers to build his house and furnishings.