The Indiana Insider Blog

These Rocks Are Rolling: A Rare Look at an Active Limestone Quarry

The Pentagon. The Biltmore Estate. The Met. Ellis Island. What do all these have in common? Indiana limestone. Indiana’s quarries have literally shaped our nation’s landscape, providing materials for monuments, state capitals and other landmark buildings from coast to coast.


Photo by Teal Strabbing


Throughout June, Bloomington is honoring this rock-solid heritage with Limestone Month festivities. And this year, the festivities include the rare chance to tour the active quarry at Maple Hill, which has been in operation since the 1920s. 2016 also marks the 20th anniversary of the Indiana Limestone Symposium, which engages kids and adults alike in immersive hand-carving lessons.

Don’t miss your chance to watch master carvers at work, learn about architectural history, see photography and sculpture exhibits and marvel at sparkling displays of gems, minerals and fossils. Here are a few upcoming highlights:


Photo by Teal Strabbing


Quarry Tours

Furst Quarry Tour
Quarry owner and preservationist Duncan Campbell offers a guided walking tour of his inactive quarry’s 30 acres. More info.

  • Cost: $10 per person
  • Time: June 17, 3-5 p.m.
  • Location: Shuttle departs from Bloomington Visitors Center

Maple Hill Quarry Tour
Discover the geology of Salem Limestone on this active quarry tour guided by Dr. Todd Thompson, State Geologist and Director of the Indiana Geological Survey. More info.

  • Cost: $10 per person
  • Time: June 25, 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
  • Location: Shuttle departs from Bloomington Visitors Center


Limestone Symposium Events

20th Anniversary Sculpture Exhibit

  • Cost: Free
  • Time: Monday through Friday, 9 a.m.-7 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
  • Location: Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center


Hand Carving Lessons

Learn the art of carving through hands-on immersive instruction and create your own limestone sculpture. Single-day, five-day and weeklong sessions available for adults and children ages 10-17. More info.

  • Cost: varies
  • Time: June 5-25
  • Location: Bybee Stone Co.


For more events and information, visit

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