Stone Quarries

WHS in which stone quarrying is a significant element ie Where Quarrying has been carried out on an industrial scale in relation to the technology of the period or has particular cultural or associative value. Thus excluding small village/town etc quarries.

Wiki defines a quarry as "a place from which dimension stone, rock, construction aggregate, riprap, sanf, gravel or slate has been excavated from the ground. A quarry is the same thing as an open-pit mine from which minerals are extracted. The only trivial difference between the two is that open-pit mines that produce building materials and dimension stone are commonly referred to as quarries. The word quarry can also include the underground quarrying for stone, such as Bath stone"

In Oct 2014 TICCIH ("The International Committee for the Preservation of the Industrial Heritage") produced a "Thematic study" titled "Stone Quarrying Landscapes as World Heritage sites".
"This document is offered as a draft towards establishing TICCIH/ICOMOS guidelines on identifying stone quarry landscapes with the potential to be nominated for inscription as World Heritage cultural landscapes, following discussion with European Quarry Landscapes Network delegates at Teruel (Spain) in October 2014"

In App 1 the Report lists "sites (which) are currently on the UNESCO list as cultural landscapes in which quarrying is an element". WHS which are not CLs but within which a quarry is a significant element are also within the definition of this connection

Connected Sites

Site Rationale Link
Aphrodisias Marble quarries
Australian Convict Sites Old North Road
Blaenavon Industrial Landscape As well as including Iron and Coal production a major aspect of the landscape were the quarries for obtaining Limestone used as a flux in the iron-making process
Caves of Maresha and Bet Guvrin Bet Guvrin: It was as stone quarries that most of the caves were originally dug - "It was during (the Hellenistic) period that extensive building began in the lower city. This required the quarrying of many caves that provided the building blocks for construction on the surface; most of the subterranean complexes were quarried at that time.".... "In the late Byzantine period (the seventh century CE), the bell caves began to be quarried for building stone"... "The Early Muslim period: ..... During this period the caves were further quarried for building stone; that is the time when most of the bell caves were dug. The quarrying of the bell caves reached its zenith during the Early Muslim period, from the seventh to the eleventh centuries CE, when the building material they produced was sold at distant markets. The tenth-century Arab historian Al-Muqaddasi wrote that the district of Bet Guvrin had numerous marble quarries, apparently referring to the chalk quarries in the bell caves. At a later stage of the Early Muslim period, some of the bell caves were turned into columbaria or plastered cisterns" (Nom File)
Chankillo Archaeoastronomical Complex Archaeological research has documented in several parts of the property the quarries used for the provision of stone, the main construction material, the lithic workshops, both at the same quarries and in specialized spaces, the accumulations of shaped stones in the process of transfer between the quarries and the constructions, the tools used in the construction, and the areas for discarding materials leftover from the construction. All this evidence points to the originality of the construction materials used in Chankillo. (Nomation Text, p. 90-91)
City of Bath The Comb Down and Bathampton Down mines date "from the 17th and 18th Century and were used to extract Bath stone for the city of Bath and elsewhere in the UK......An underground survey of the Firs and Byfield mine areas was carried out in 1994, commissioned by the then Bath City Council. It was found that approximately 80% of the mines had less than 6 m cover and as little as 2 m in some places. Irregular mining and robbing stone from supporting pillars had left the mines unstable...An Environmental Impact Assessment was completed for the stabilisation scheme ...... in December 2002. This highlighted that the mine is within the World Heritage Site of the City of Bath" (Wiki)
Dholavira: A Harappan City A sandstone quarry from where sandstone was excavated, converted into huge architectural members and even exported to sites such as Harappa and Mohenjo-daro, several hundred kilometres away
Dorset and East Devon Coast Beer Quarry Caves. Used since Roman times and the source of strong but easily carved stone for many of England's most famous buildings such as the Tower of London, Westminster Abbey and Windsor Castle.
Gochang, Hwasun, and Ganghwa Dolmen "They also preserve important evidence of how the stones were quarried, transported, and raised..... Hwasun Dolmen Site ...In a number of cases the stone outcrops from which the stones making up the dolmens were quarried can be identified."
Neolithic Flint Mines at Spiennes Contain both open and pit quarries
Nubian Monuments Includes the ancient Egyptian quarry at Aswan which includes a part quarried obelisk
Old City of Jerusalem Zedekiah's Cave
Rapa Nui Includes the main quarry for the Moai at Rano Raraku
Robben Island Includes the limestone quarry at which Mandela et all were made to work
Syracuse "Recent calculations estimate that about 4.700.000 m3 of stone have been extracted from the 12 Syracusan quarries. The quarries, or latomies (litos = stone and temnos = cut) were in fact immense caves of stone from which the necessary materials were extracted for the building of the city and its monuments. The quarries spread over about 1.5 km in a curved line that follows approximately the border of the limestone plateau which dominates the coastal plain towards Ortygia, starting from the vicinity of the Greek Theatre until the sea, near the Capuchin Convent. The extractions were usually made in the open air, and traced the layers of the more compact rock as deep as 40 m, digging immense grottoes below the rocky layers of the surface crust supported by enormous pillars. As reminded by Cicero who defined them as safe places against any attempt of evasion, the quarries were perfect for keeping prisoners who were condemned to dig masses. In particular, historians tell of the Carthaginians captured by Gelone at Imera in 480 BC and the 7000 Athenians who survived the massacre of 413 BC. But the quarries also served as dwelling places for the more humble sects and also as funeral corporations, evidenced by the presence of many votive squares cut into the walls dedicated to the deceased. The quarries offered also an excellent form of defence for Syracuse and Neapolis" (Nom File)
Takht-e Soleyman "The mountain to the east was used by the Sasanians as a quarry for building stone." (AB eval)
Tanbaly "Ancient quarries are found associated with the Bronze Age cemeteries – providing the large stone slabs used in the construction of costs." (AB ev)
The Slate Landscape of Northwest Wales
Upper Middle Rhine Valley "The Wilhelm Erb mine shaft in Kaub, begun in 1837, with many later extensions, is evidence of the slate quarrying done on the Middle Rhine since the Middle Ages. A large part of the installation is still intact, even though a great deal was dismantled after slate mining and working was discontinued in 1972. The Rhine mine on the opposite side of the river from Kaub is the only remaining working slate mine." and " There is also documentary evidence of economically significant mining in the Middle Rhine region since the late Middle Ages. The slate quarry in Kaub is mentioned in 1355"(Nom File)
Xochicalco "Beneath Xochicalco, archaeologists have recorded a system of man-made tunnels resulted from the limestone quarries used to construct the site. The Central Acropolis lies on top of a mountain whose internal caves were artificially remodeled to create a series of galleries." and " Beneath this platform is to be found the entrance to the caves that were used in the early phases of occupation for quarrying building materials. Later it was modified as an observatory for studying the heavens and for ceremonies." (AB eval)


Do you know of another WHS we could connect to Stone Quarries?

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A connection should:

  1. Not be "self evident"
  2. Link at least 3 different sites
  3. Not duplicate or merely subdivide the "Category" assignment already identified on this site.
  4. Add some knowledge or insight (whether significant or trivial!) about WHS for the users of this site
  5. Be explained, with reference to a source