Granite Quarry Crew at Work, Mount Desert Island, ca. 1890

Contributed by Mount Desert Island Historical Society


This photo of nineteen men and three oxen was taken while at work in the granite quarries at Hall Quarry, ca. 1885. The quarry was named for Cyrus Hall, who came to Mount Desert Island (MDI) in the early 1870s for timber, but soon discovered that there was a large market for the pink easy to carve granite he found on MDI.

By 1871 Hall had opened Hall Quarry, cutting cellar stone and paving blocks for Boston. He soon opened more quarries around the island, as the location, boundless supply of stone, and deep water access were ideal for business. Stones were loaded directly onto boats that would transport them all over the county. The most notable projects that used stone from Mount Desert Island were the Congressional Library, the Brooklyn Bridge and the Philadelphia Mint.

The quarry business reached its peak in the 1890s. Hall closed his operations in 1901, after a major contract failed to come through.

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About This Item

  • Title: Granite Quarry Crew at Work, Mount Desert Island, ca. 1890
  • Creation Date: circa 1890
  • Subject Date: circa 1890
  • Location: Mount Desert, Hancock County, ME
  • Media: Photographic print
  • Dimensions: 20 cm x 25 cm
  • Local Code: MDIHSjpg97584752
  • Object Type: Image

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For more information about this item, contact:

Mount Desert Island Historical Society
PO Box 653, 353 Sound Drive, Mount Desert, ME 04660
(207) 276-9323

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