Several times a year, we include a focus on U.S. Quarried Stone in Stone World. With so many quarries right here at home, it’s a great way to feature material that is locally available. In an age where sustainability and environmental-friendly practices are at a forefront, knowing that so many local sources of stone are available is helpful when it comes to green building.
And while many of these quarries have been around for decades, they aren’t stagnant. They continue to evolve. An example is Dakota Granite Co., which is featured beginning on page 46 of this issue. Located in Milbank, SD, the company has been in the quarrying business for more than 90 years. While it has been running four sites — three in South Dakota and one in Minnesota — for many years, it currently is in the process of purchasing three new quarries to further diversify its product offerings.
Based on the East Coast in Branford, CT, the Stony Creek granite quarry is another example of a site with tremendous history. It first started producing material in 1858. This material has been used prominently throughout New York City, including the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty and buildings on the campus of Columbia University. It has also been the material of choice for many parks in Manhattan. As a result, it was the perfect solution for the renovation of The Battery, which is also featured in this issue of Stone World (page 60).
“It is strong and beautiful in its color tones, and has the historic significance of being the pedestal stone base of the Statue of Liberty,” said Warrie Price, president and founder of The Battery Conservancy, a private organization that manages the park in partnership with the City, when describing the granite. “The Battery is the gateway to visit Liberty Island. It is the waterfront where most visitors come to view and to salute The Lady, so of course this granite adds a special presence to this experience.”
With granite quarries in the Midwest, northeast and south, limestone in Indiana and Texas, white marble in Vermont, Bluestone in New York and numerous schist, slate and flagstone sites in Pennsylvania, the U.S. has a great deal to offer when it comes to building material. And I’m only pointing out a few of the many stone-rich regions. Like Stony Creek granite, many of these stones have ties to historic architecture.
I’m not saying to forget about the beautiful exotic stones and other material coming from abroad, because they certainly have their place in design, too. Instead, I wanted to point out that maybe you or your customers don’t have to search too far for your next project. It could be in your own “backyard.”