Teach Mhicí Mac Gabhainn is a fine example of regional vernacular architecture. Local materials and traditional building technology were used in its construction. It is an example of a direct-entry vernacular dwelling with a bed out (‘caileach’) to the rear of the building. There is evidence to suggest that it was once a combined byre and dwelling.
The roof is an example of rope thatching that was prevalent this part of County Donegal in the past. A room added behind the hearth has a roof of old slate. A small window in the gable suggests that the loft space in the room behind the hearth was used as an extra bedroom.
The building is an example of an extended farmstead in that an outbuilding with a thatched gable roof was added to the lower end of the dwelling away from the hearth. The dwelling exhibits a half door and two-over-two- sliding sash windows. The interior of the dwelling also contains several original features such as Donegal hearth, a box-bed beside the hearth and the double box-bed in the ‘upper room’.
The building is not just of architectural interest, it possesses cultural significance. It is the homestead of Micí Mac Gabhann author of Rotha Mór an tSaoil/The Hard Road to Klondike. His book recounts his experiences as a labourer in the ‘The Laggan’, Scotland and the United States of America. His account acts as reminder of the tradition of out-migration and emigration that once existed in western areas of County Donegal and serves to highlight the immigrant experience of many Irish people aboard. His account (recorded by Sean O hEochaidh of the Irish Folklore Commission) is one of only a small number of regional accounts to survive to present day.