June is Limestone Month!

The Empire Quarry in Lawrence County supplied the limestone for the construction of the Empire State Building in New York.

The month of June is celebrated as Limestone Month in Lawrence and Monroe Counties. Special events, including tours, carving demonstrations, exhibitions, and festivals, are scheduled throughout the month to highlight the area’s most notable industry and heritage. Lawrence County’s rich limestone quarrying and carving history began in the early 1800s and since that time Indiana limestone has been prominent in our nation’s historic and significant architecture. Limestone from Lawrence County has been used in the building of many US landmarks such as the Empire State Building, the Pentagon, the new Yankee Stadium, the Federal Triangle, the National Cathedral, the Chicago Tribune Tower, and the Biltmore Estate, just to name a few.

The dimensional limestone belt in south central Indiana stretches for 30 miles from Stinesville in Monroe County to Bedford in Lawrence County. This type of limestone is fine-grained, durable, and carvable, which makes it a versatile and weather resistant material for architecture. 340 million years ago a gentle inland sea covered Illinois and Indiana, and the skeletons of animals, fish, and invertebrates over time compacted into our present day limestone layers. In some of the layers, fossils are still discernible to the human eye.

The Land Of Limestone Tour will be held Tuesday, June 5, from 10-11 AM. The Land of Limestone exhibit is permanently housed in a historic limestone building located at 405 I Street in Bedford. It is on the National Register of Historic Places and was once the headquarters of the Indiana Limestone Company. Today, Oakland City College and IVY Tech share the building.

Land of Limestone Exhibit, 405 I Street, Bedford, Indiana.

“If Tombstones Could Talk” features interpreters in character at a special tour of Greenhill Cemetery in Bedford. Visit monuments of historic figures in the limestone industry. This event will be on Sunday, June 24, from 10 AM-Noon. Tickets are available for a picnic lunch and tour for $15 or $5 for the tour only. Call the Lawrence County Tourism Commission to reserve your tickets, 800-798-0769.
Stone Carving Exhibit will be held in downtown Bedford on Friday, June 29, and Saturday, June 30, from 11 AM-6 PM. Professional stone carvers will demonstrate live and provide an opportunity for you to try your hand at limestone carving. An exhibit of limestone sculptures will be at the nearby Lawrence County Museum of History, 929 15th Street, Bedford. While there, vote for your favorite sculpture for the People’s Choice Award. Located around the corner is the Wiley Art Center with an exhibit of limestone-related paintings by local artists, 1402 J Street, Bedford.

Festivals cap off the month with the BBQ at the Quarry on Friday, June 29, from Noon-Midnight, and Saturday, June 30, from 8 AM-Midnight. There will be BBQ contests with sampling, beer garden, and live bands. On  Wednesday, July 4, celebrate our nation’s birthday at the Limestone Heritage Festival at various locations in Bedford. Events include a showcase parade at 11 AM, an ice cream social, the Lawrence County Community Band Concert, and a live band concert with fireworks.

Other limestone attractions in Lawrence County are Bluespring Caverns underground boat tours, Spring Mill State Park with Twin Caves boat tours and the Pioneer Village and the Gristmill constructed of limestone, and limestone architecture, art, and quarries throughout the county.

The Limestone Trail is a self-guided tour through Monroe and Lawrence Counties. Each point on the trail demonstrates the functionality, art, or significance of limestone in the area. Brochures can be downloaded at http://www.limestonecountry.com or copies are available at the Lawrence County Tourism office, 533 W. Main Street, Mitchell, 800-798-0769.

The complete Limestone Month calendar of events can be found online at http://www.limestonemonth.

June is Limestone Month.

Published in: on May 29, 2012 at 4:00 pm  Comments (6)  

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6 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. “June is Limestone Month! Limestonecountry’s Blog” ended up being a good blog post and also I was very satisfied to find it. Thanks a lot-Chanel

    • Thank you for your kind words!

  2. I personally question precisely why you labeled this post,
    “June is Limestone Month! | Limestonecountry’s Blog”. In any event I really loved the post!Thanks for the post,Harvey

    • We celebrate our famous limestone industry every year during the month of June. We have events throughout the entire month, hence “Limestone Month”. Thanks for your kind words!

  3. I personally would like to save this particular blog, “June is
    Limestone Month! Limestonecountry’s Blog” on my personal site. Would you care in case I reallydo it? Regards -Sherrie

    • Hi Sherrie,
      Thanks for your interest in Limestone Month on our blog. Where can we find your blog to review it before we give permission?
      Lawrence County Tourism

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