International Order of Odd Fellows Cabins, OR 2020

Located on the shores of Paulina Lake, the International Order of Odd Fellows Cabins project is popular not only for its stunning location, but also for its connection to the humanist and philanthropic organization that built them.

PROJECT PARTNER: Deschutes National Forest, OR

SESSION DATES:   August 9-14, August 16-21, August 23-28, August 30 – September 4

Please plan to arrive at our campsite no earlier than 6pm and no later than 8pm on the first day of your session. 


SITE INFORMATION:         Site is RV/trailer accessible  Tent camping only 

LOCATION:  We will camp near the cabinsa the Newberry Group Campsite. This site is accessible to RVs and tent campers. There are no hookups and the ground may not be perfectly level. Please plan to arrive no earlier than 6pm and no later than 8pm the first day of your session.

ABOUT VOLUNTEERING:  HistoriCorps projects are free for volunteers! HistoriCorps will provide all meals, tools, training, and equipment, and a campsite. Volunteers are responsible for their own transportation to the campsite, sleeping equipment, work clothes and boots, and other personal gear. Most projects have one spot per session for a “Kitchen Helper” in addition to our project work volutneer spots. Scroll down to read more and register!

HistoriCorps does not charge for its volunteering projects. The majority of project costs are covered by our project partners and grants, but as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, HistoriCorps relies on donations to continue engaging volunteers to save significant historical sites across America for generations to come. Your donation of any amount will make an incredible difference! Increase your impact – make a generous gift today.

Project Site Description & History

Inspired by the destitute conditions of 17th-century England, a group of citizens banded together to provide small amounts of charity to the most vulnerable populations. An observer commented, “it is odd that a person might help another and expect nothing in return.” Thus, the Odd Fellows were born. In 1819, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows (IOOF) was founded in North America. Odd Fellows are committed to the principles of “Friendship, Love and Truth,” which they practice through charitable acts and managing fellowship lodges. Paulina Lake in Deschutes National Forest, OR is the site of a group of IOOF cabins. They are built primarily of native lava rock and pine and are emblematic of the “folk” architecture emblematic of Depression-era buildings in the forested Pacific Northwest.

Paulina Lake is located within the caldera of Newberry Volcano, which makes up the Newberry National Volcanic Monument. According to the Deschutes National Forest, “In November of 1990, Newberry National Volcanic Monument was created within the boundaries of Deschutes National Forest. Managed by the U.S. Forest Service, this monument provides a unique opportunity to view the Lava Lands of central Oregon. Newberry National Volcanic National Monument includes 54,000+ acres of lakes, lava flows, and spectacular geologic features in central Oregon. The highest point within the Monument is the summit Paulina Peak (7,985 ft.), showcasing views of the Cascades, Newberry Caldera and across the High Desert.”

Volunteers work on log repair in 2018

Steam rising off Paulina Lake’s beach during sunrise

Volunteers really took ownership of the project work in 2018!

Newberry National Volcanic Monument offers sweeping views of jagged rockscapes and calm lakes. Photo source: Deschutes National Forest

Volunteering Safely During COVID-19

HistoriCorps prides itself on ensuring the health and safety of all volunteer participants, whether we’re working on a roof, or during a pandemic. Our team has worked hard to put together stringent health and safety protocols for the 2020 project season:

MASKS All volunteers are required to bring at least six reusable, washable face masks. Volunteers will wear two masks each day (one for camp, one for the jobsite). They will be washed once throughout the project. Masks are required for when working less than 6 feet apart, or in an enclosed environment.
GLOVES All volunteers are required to bring their own work gloves.
HEALTHY ARRIVAL Volunteers will only join projects if they are not experiencing any symptoms of illness, such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, muscle aches, or other symptoms of COVID-19 as identified by the CDC. Volunteers will not plan to travel to or through areas highly impacted by COVID-19, nor outside of the US, within 14 days before their project begins. Volunteers will affirm that they do not believe they have been exposed to a person with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19, are not waiting to be cleared as noncontagious following a diagnosis, and have been following all recommended guidelines as much as possible by practicing social distancing and taking other precautions. Volunteers will travel to the jobsite alone, or with someone they live with (such as a family member) who has also shown no signs or symptoms of illness.
IN CASE OF INFECTION Any volunteer or staff member that developes COVID-19 symptoms must immediately self-isolate and leave the jobsite. If the individual is physically unable to do so, staff will follow Wilderness First Aid guidelines for medevac.
FOLLOWING HISTORICORPS PROTOCOLS All volunteers are required to abide by and practice the health and safety protocols that HistoriCorps staff are implementing.
CREW SIZE CAP All volunteer crews will be “capped” at a maximum of six volunteers.

Scope of Work

Learning and working alongside expert HistoriCorps field staff, volunteers will undertake the following scope of work to preserve the Odd Fellows Cabins:
  • Carefully remove and replace deteriorated logs from the base of Cabin #1 and Cabin #2:  70%
  • Deconstruct and re-build top of a brick chimney on Cabin #4:  5%
  • Remove and replace deteriorated chinking and daubing on the exterior of Cabin #4:  20%
If time allows, we will also rehabilitate windows and tackle additional daubing replacement.

Please note: Tasks vary by day and by week, depending on a variety of factors including: weather, project priorities, previous groups’ work, and more. Though it is likely you will get to learn and practice most or all of the above tasks, it is not guaranteed. The higher percentage of the scope a particular task is, the more likely you will get to practice it.

Volunteer Logistics, Policies, and Advice

We’re so glad you’re interested in joining this project! If you’re new to our community, review the Volunteer FAQ and COVID-19 Protocols first! Please note the following logistics and policies:

  • Volunteering with HistoriCorps is free! We will provide all meals, tools, training, equipment, and a campsite or shared indoor lodging. Dinner is not provided on the first night.
  • Volunteers are responsible for bringing their own gear, including 6+ reusable cloth face masks, gloves, sturdy work clothes and boots, and appropriate sleeping equipment. Check the average temperatures before you start packing – the nights and mornings may be colder than you anticipate! Then, read this advice about how to stay warm when tent camping in colder places.
  • Campsite accessibility varies by project. Some projects can accommodate tents only; others can accommodate medium-large RVs. Please review the project site description above for more information, and if you’re still not sure, email for help.
  • If this project does not offer showers, you might want to consider bringing a solar shower or research other methods to clean up after the work day
  • Volunteer crew sizes generally range from 4-8 volunteers, with two HistoriCorps staff that lead and train volunteers in the work.
  • Volunteers are asked to arrive after 6pm and before 8pm on the first day of their session. If you would like to request special permission to arrive early, please email
  • Safety is one of HistoriCorps’ top priorities, and volunteers can contribute to a safe working environment by ensuring their physical fitness is adequate for the work. See above for this project’s scope of work and difficulty level. Please, call us if you are not quite sure if a project is a good fit for your skills or fitness level. We may be able to suggest a project more suitable and enjoyable for you.
  • Dogs are generally allowed to accompany their humans to jobsites (actually, we love having dogs join us around the campfire!). However: HistoriCorps also follows the rules and regulations of our project partner. If the project partner does not permit dogs onsite, then HistoriCorps is no exception. Please ask HistoriCorps or the project partner directly if you have any questions about whether Fido is welcome.

Sign Up!

We’re thrilled this project has inspired you to volunteer!  All sessions are capped at a strict maximum of 6 volunteers, including the Kitchen Helper.