"…Of the various mineral productions, iron ore is the most abundant. There are immense quarries of red sandstone at Portland and Cromwell, and marble and limestone is quarried at Canaan and Washington. A large amount of orthoclase comes from Glastonbury and Middletown…."
“Calcite: Also called Calcareous spar, Calc Spar, Calcium carbonate, Carbonate of lime. Vitreous to earthy luster. Hardness 3. Specific gravity 2.72. Transparent to opaque. May be colorless. Has three directions of perfect cleavage that break the crystals into rhombohedrons. Conchoidal fracture. Brittle, Crystallizes in the hexagonal system. Found in crystals, granular, compact, fibrous, etc.
“Occurs in sedimentary rock masses, igneous rocks. Formed by the action of carbonated water on calcium silicates, by metamorphic action, etc.
“Chemical composition: calcium carbonate. CaCO3. Identified by its cleavage and effervescence with acid.
“It contains 65% calcium oxide (lime) and is used as a source of lime, mortar, cement, flux, fertilizer, crayons, etc. Its name is derived from the Latin word for ‘lime.’
“Localities: Allingtown, Berlin, Boardman’s Bridge, Branchville, Branford, Bristol, Brookfield, Canaan, Cheshire, Danbury, Derby, Durham, Farmington, Granby, Guilford, Haddam, Hartford, Lime Rock, Meriden, Middlefield, Middletown, Milford, Monroe, Mount Carmel Center, New Britain, New Haven, North Branford, North Guilford, North Haven, Portland, Roaring Brook, Roxbury, Salisbury, Simsbury, South Britain, Southbury, Southington, Suffield, Trumbull, Vernon, Watertown, West Redding, Woodbridge, Woodbury.”
“Corundum: Luster vitreous to adamantine, sometimes pearly. Hardness 9. Specific gravity 3.9 to 4.1. Transparent to translucent. Color gray, brown, bluish, blue, red, yellow, colorless. Streak white. No cleavage. Parting may be basal or in two directions at 94° to each other. Fracture Conchoidal to uneven. Brittle. Very tough when compact. Crystallizes in the hexagonal system. Found in pyramids, prisms, tabular, compact, and granular.
“Occurs in crystalline limestone, gneiss, mica schist, granite, and other crystalline rocks. Associated with magnetite, mica, chlorite, serpentine, spinel, nephelite. Alters to zoisite, kyanite, margarite, damourite, muscovite, tourmaline.
“Chemical composition: aluminum oxide. A12O3. Identified by the hardness, luster, specific gravity, and parting. Used as an abrasive.
“The Indian name for corundum is ‘kauruntaka’ and our present word has been derived from it. When transparent and clear, corundum is used as a gem. When deep red it is called ruby. All other gem colors of corundum are really sapphire, but in recent years the term sapphire has been reserved for the blue verities. The other colors have been given the names of the gems they most resemble, to which has been added the word ‘oriental.’ Thus the green sapphire is called ‘oriental emerald,’ the yellow sapphire is ‘oriental topaz,’ etc.
“Localities: Barkhamsted, Haddam, Litchfield, Norwich, Washington, West Farms.”
“Dolomite: Also called Bitter spar, Pearl spar. Vitreous to pearly luster. Hardness 3.5 to 4. Specific gravity 2.9 to 3.3. Transparent to translucent. Colorless, pink, gray, green, black, brown. Streak white to gray. Perfect cleavage in three directions, forming an angle of 73° 45’. Conchoidal fracture. Brittle. Crystallizes in the hexagonal system. Crystals generally have curved surfaces.
“Occurs in beds and ore deposits, and in cavities in igneous and sedimentary rocks.
“Chemical composition: Dolomite as a rock is magnesian limestone [CaMg(CO3)2]. Dolomite as a mineral contains almost equal amounts of calcium and magnesium, but the latter may be replaced in part by iron or manganese, or both, so that the chemical formula is Ca(Mg,Fe,Mn)(Co3) 2. It may be identified by the hardness, and curved crystals. It does not effervesce in cold dilute hydrochloric acid.
“Used as a building and ornamental stone, as a source of magnesium, and as a refractory. It is named after the French chemist Dolomieu.
“Localities: Berlin, Brookfield, Canaan, Cornwall, Danbury, Durham, Haddam, Housatonic valley, Kent, Litchfield, Middlefield, Milford, New Haven, New Milford, North Stonington, Norwich, Redding, Redgefield, Salisbury, Sharon, Stamford, Washington, Watertown, Worthington.”
“President: Henry Murray, Boston, Massachusetts.
Vice-Presidents: W. S. White, Rockland, Me.; Thos. Nawn, Concord, N. H.; Chas. H. More, Barre, Vt.; A. T. Farnum, Providence, R. I., Wm. Booth, New London, Conn.; C. B. Canfield, New York City. Treasurer: Isaac F. Woodbury, Boston.
"Quarries Vie for National Recognition! - We Need Your Help!!!
"The National Park Service has recently completed their study of the Portland Brownstone Quarries, and are nominating the quarries for a possible designation as a National Historic Landmark!
"On April 10 (2000), the Landmarks Committee in Washington DC will meet to evaluate the nomination. Their recommendations will then be forwarded to the National Park System Advisory Board on April 16 in San Francisco, where the final decision will be made.
"It is important to the future of Portland that the quarries are recognized for their historic significance. It was the acquisition of brownstone that first drew settlers to this location, developing an industry famous the world over. Shipyards were built in town to accommodate the transportation of this construction material to New York and California and even to Europe! The very existence of Portland depended on the economic value of the brownstone quarries.
"When brownstone was replaced by cheaper building materials, the quarries fell into disuse and remained that way for a good portion of the twentieth century. Flood waters filled the excavation sites, and the beauty of the quarries was largely ignored. Indeed, many people in town have no idea that these wonderful sites exist just 200 yards or so from Main Street's business center."
“Serpentine: Luster greasy, waxy, earthy. Hardness 2 to 5. Specific gravity 2.2 to 2.65. Translucent. Color varies, white to black through all colors, with green predominating. White streak. Fracture Conchoidal, splintery. Brittle. Crystallizes in the monoclinic system. Crystals unknown. Found massive, fibrous, platy.
“Occurs in igneous and metamorphic rocks. Associated with magnesite, chromite, pyrope. Formed from magnesium silicates such as olivine, pyroxene, amphibole.
“Chemical composition: Hydrous magnesium silicate. H4Mg3Si2O9(?).
“Its name is due to its serpentine markings.
“Localities: East Haven, Greenwich, Litchfield, Middlefield, Milford, New Haven, Norfolk, Orange, Ridgefield, Stratford, Winchester.”
The time period covered in this article is during the early 1800s.
Key words: Adamant Quarries, Montpelier, Vermont; block and tackle; boom derrick; clog chains; John Crouse of Syracuse, New York; Fayette Cutler, Barre, Vermont; double runner sleds; freight Tariffs; Joseph Glidden, Mark Glidden;granite quarries; granite sheds; horse sweep; Jones Brothers, Vermont; “New Hampshire Horses,” railroads; ramp, rollers; single-drum winch; skids; spur track; St. John the Devine Cathedral, New York City; Stanford Mausoleum; wagon pulled by horses and oxen teams, wagons.
A Report on the Sandstone of the Connecticut Valley, Especially Its Fossil Footmarks, by Edward Hitchcock, New York, Arno Press, 1974, Reprint of the 1858 ed. issued by W. White, Printer to the State, Boston under title: Ichnology of New England; a report on the sandstone of the Connecticut Valley, especially its fossil footmarks,” ISBN: 0405057431.