Around the globe, Francini acquires the most beautiful, timeless, and dependable natural stone materials from what are called quarries. Essentially, quarries are locations where minerals, rocks, and sand are easily extractable. These areas are called 'open-pit mines,' since they are open in relation to the Earth's surface.
For centuries, quarries have been used to extract the most beautiful natural stone on the planet. The Great Pyramids of Egypt were used with limestone and granite that was hand-cut from quarries. The Ancient Romans also forced the lower-classes (often criminals and slaves) to cut stones. Throughout history, people have paid exorbitant sums of money to have access to these premium quarries, which house the natural stone materials Francini Inc. obtains.
How Do We Extract?
Of course, methods of extracting natural stone from quarries have changed drastically throughout time. In the early Aswan area of Egypt, people mined quarries with tiny chisels and picks comprised of iron and bronze. In fact, eighty percent of the Egyptian temples and extraordinary monuments were made from red, black, and grey granite extracted from quarries. A different way to extract stones was by using a pulley system with sleds and ropes to lift the material from the ground. In our technologically advanced society, people are now able to use automated drilling systems and hauling equipment to obtain the finest natural stone on the planet!
Aggregate vs Dimension
These are the two most common types of quarry material. Dimension stones are utilized to decorate buildings, build monuments, or even comprise an entire building. Sometimes kitchen counters are made with Dimension stones, as well as Headstones (comprised of granite). On the contrary, Aggregate stones produce asphalt and concrete. The Romans invented concrete and used it to construct their road system, as well as their elegant aqueducts.
The Compositional Differences
Where the quarry geographically resides fundamentally alters the physical structure of the stone. For example, in Greece, beautiful and fine-grained marble with a calcite composition is extracted. A lot of Italian sculptors prefer Parian marble because it is nearly translucent in its whiteness. Pentelic marble, on the other hand, is largely white with shades of gold.
In England, the Portland Quarry makes sharp and beautiful white limestone. This stone is used in the facade of Waterloo station and helps to comprise St. Paul's Cathedral in London.
Pakistani quarries house some of the most beautiful stone found anywhere. One specific quarry is especially acclaimed for producing onyx. In India, soapstone is produced in quarries. Brazil produces Blue Bahia, a rare and acclaimed blue granite from the central Amazon.
Clearly, wherever the quarry material heavily dictates the sort of material. Luckily, our team at Francini acquires beautiful stones from all over the world, giving us a diverse and timeless range of natural stone materials!
Contact us to view our pristine slab gallery locations and learn why Francini makes all the difference when choosing your next natural stone installation!