Bluestone Monuments

Gifts from the past

Pam and I ambled around the Arboretum for our Easter 2023 outing. A type of sandstone popular with Cornell monument builders, called “Lenroc” after a mansion build by Cornell’s founder, was used for these benches built into the hillside of the FR Newman Arboretum. The views are more interesting than the bench, the arch of stone in midground in one photo.

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All photography using the IPhone 14 ProMax triple camera, raw format, edited on the phone.

The stone is mined locally from surrounding hills. Calling it “Lenroc” (Cornell spelled backward) is a misnomer as the stone is mined widely throughout the region.

Feldspathic Greywacke

“Bluestone from Pennsylvania and New York is a sandstone defined as feldspathic greywacke. The sand-sized grains from which bluestone is constituted were deposited in the Catskill Delta during the Middle to Upper Devonian Period of the Paleozoic Era, approximately 370 to 345 million years ago…..

Glacial Landscape on an early spring day, Easter 2023


…The Catskill Delta was created from runoff from the Acadian Mountains (“Ancestral Appalachians”). This delta ran in a narrow band from southwest to northeast and today provides the bluestone quarried from the Catskill Mountains and Northeastern Pennsylvania. The term “bluestone” is derived from a deep-blue-colored sandstone first found in Ulster County, New York.”

You can feel the origin of this bluestone from these macros of two pavers from a monument bench.

Reference: “Bluestone” Wikipedia.

Copyright 2023 Michael Stephen Wills All Rights Reserved