Brian, Mike and John Rector first began pulling fieldstone out of the woods and hills of Tennessee with their father over 25 years ago. They recognized there was opportunity in the masonry business and started Plateau Masonry in 1986. As the company expanded, the need for stone grew — and not only for native fieldstone.

The company expanded in flagstone and dimensional stone quarries, and in 1999, BMJ Stone was created. The Fall Creek Select quarry, with its trending shades of tans and browns, in addition to other sandstone quarries and fieldstone products, grew from popular demand. BMJ Stone now brings in 600 to 800 tons of raw stone a week into its yard for processing.

Recently, Plateau Masonry, BMJ Stone of Crossville, TN, collaborated with builder Charles Atkins of Knoxville, TN, and architect Jonathan Miller on a home in Knoxville, the Spencer Residence. The company’s “Stonewood Mountain” fieldstone product, which is an ashlar pattern, was chosen for applications throughout the Spencer Residence design.

“We harvest the fieldstone from the hills of Tennessee to produce the material required to fabricate the squares and rectangles that make the ashlar pattern,” said Matt Feinauer of BMJ Stone. “The fieldstone is a natural stone that you would see if you were just hiking through the woods, and due to the climate around it, it naturally grows and develops its patina. When we fabricate the stone, we try not to get anything smaller than an 8 x 8 [inch] square, and we go all the way up to 18 x 18, 12 x 12 and 12 x 18 [inches], or just random sizes in that range.” Fabrication of the stone is done using five hydraulic Chris Cutter Cee-Jay tool splitters.

The Spencer Residence, showcased in a “Parade of Homes” in October, features the Stonewood Mountain pattern and was installed with minimal grout joints to achieve an Old World look. According to Mike Rector of Plateau Masonry, when it comes to custom building stone patterns, the early stages of the project is the time to fine tune the color blends, pattern and grout colors. “This particular job is a full-thickness stone, so that means 3 to 5 inches from the face of the stone to the wall is visible on the property,” said Feinauer.

The Spencer Residence includes four fireplaces, which were installed by Plateau Masonry and were completed in three weeks. “The stone installations took about five months to complete with a crew of five people,” said Rector. “The masonry fireplace kits used on this project are made by Stone Age Manufacturing located in Tulsa, OK. The stone finish on the basement fireplace is Western Carolina granite cut in an ashlar pattern. The other two fireplaces and the exterior of the house are all done with a custom blend of ashlar pattern Tennessee fieldstone called Stonewood Mountain.”

From the beginning of the project, to the end, there was a substantial increase to its scope. “As far as the home project goes, [Charles Atkins] was most impressed with our ability to adjust to the project because it grew probably 50% over its original size, yet Mike and his crew were able to adapt to the job, and they still made the deadline on the project,” said Feinauer.

Because of the long-standing relationship between BMJ Stone, Plateau Masonry and Charles Atkins, the deadlines were met and the project was a success. “Our growth as a company is largely due to the quality relationships we have developed with other natural stone companies across the country, and locally, with the opportunities we’ve had with Charles Atkins on the Spencer Residence,” said Feinauer   

Spencer Private Residence

Knoxville, TN

Stone Supplier: BMJ Stone, Crossville, TN

Stone Installer: Plateau Masonry, Crossville, TN

Architect: Johnathan Miller Architects, Knoxville, TN

Builder: Charles Atkins Inc., Knoxville, TN