Short studs in  house on Michael Korns, Sr. farm, Somerset County, PA.

Lath and short wall studs

This photograph shows a portion of the front (south) side of the house on the Michael Korns, Sr. farm in Southampton Township, Somerset County, PA. The studs that hold the sawn lath are short; they are not as long as the main structural studs that are supported by the timber frame. With parts of the siding and lath gone, the lower ends of these studs are hanging in the air.

The only logical explanation for this that I can come up with for this awkward construction technique is that the closely spaced studs that support the lath were added after the frame of the house was constructed, and after the siding was already in place. Either the floor or the baseboard (both which had fallen by the time of the photo) obstructed the installation of the additional studs that were added to support the sawn lath. This apparent obstruction prevented the lower ends of the short studs from resting on the timber that supported the structural studs. This plausible explanation supports the theory that the sawn lath was part of a remodeling job. If the studs had been installed when the framing was originally constructed, they would logically rest on the timber frame for better support, and to add stiffness to the structure.

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