Above is a spring house I saw as I was driving along a rural road in Rockcastle county. I stopped to take a shot of it even though it was way off in the distance.
It sat alone -- no parts of a homestead were left. Constructed of laid-up limestone and a tin roof, now rusticated, it added charm to its rural setting.
Basically spring houses are built into a hill embankment to capture a flowing spring. The spring water is kept clean by having an overhead structure to flow into which also provides cool temperatures to its interior. Having the walls built with stone or rock insulates the small building and provides a cool place for storing items such as butter, meat and other dairy products. The advent of electricity brought an end to the necessity of having a spring house..
Inside the old spring houses were rock troughs that held shallow pools of water. These troughs were used to store dairy products. This particular trough belongs to a man that saved it from his old family place in Madison county. Made of hand chiseled limestone and extremely heavy, it now has been retired to his backyard in Berea, Kentucky.