Last updated: August 06. 2014 10:45AM - 570 Views
By Rachel Mendell Inquirer Correspondent

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“Quarrymen of All Kinds of Building Stones: The History & Geology of the Leesville, Ohio Stone Quarries” by Dana Martin Batory, published 2014 by Friends of the Crawford Park District, printed by The Herald, Inc., New Washington (195 pages)

This history of the Leesville Quarries is a must-have for local history buffs. They say all history is connected, and this book proves it. Inside you will once again meet well-known names such as Rettig, Hoffman, Hauck, Dapper, Adams, Heckert, Morrow, Volk, Warner, DeWalt, Berg, Lowe, Sehl, Blazer, Garverick, Freese, Champion, Hipp, Gaus, Clutter, Jenner, Lewis, Berg, Clements, Donnenwirth and Daum.

You will enjoy many photos from the files and collections of Batory, the author, the Bucyrus Historical Society, the Crestline Historical Society, Ken Striker, Bill Fisher, Joe Everly, and various newspapers of the time (1829 – 1912). Included in the history are the geology and early history of the area, how the Leesville Stone Company was incorporated and who owned what, the various quarries included in the company, the shareholders, the operations and processing, the products the company offered, and the various buildings and projects still in existence today that used Leesville Quarry stone in their building.

Stone from the quarries was bought by the railroads in the area, bridge construction companies, building and side walk builders, home business builders and churches. Many of these structures are still in existence today. Stone from the quarries traveled to East Palestine, Galion, Bucyrus, Crestline, Leesville, North Robonson, Ada, Shelby, New Washington, Nevada, Sulphur Springs, Loss Creek, Whetstone, Fostoria, Upper Sandusky, and Tiro; among many others including Columbus, Fort Wayne, Ind. and Prescott, Ariz.

Stone cutting and work at the quarries was a dangerous business. Batory also researched some of the accidents that happened at the quarry and the doctors who cared for the men.

The best parts of this book, I think, are the photos of the men who worked in the quarry and the drawings of the machinery they used to cut and transport the stone. When we walk the steps of the Crawford County Courthouse, the streets of Crestline or many of our area churches, and as we walk on the solid old sidewalks in our area, we are walking on stone cut by these men. When we take a walk through the woods to the river at Lowe-Volk Park, we are walking where these men once worked over 100 years ago.

Much of the quarry remains are viewable: “To observe rock faces that remain from former quarry operations, hike the trails at the 38 acre Lowe-Volk Park at 2401 State Route 598, Crestline, OH 44827. To observe the best quarry remnants, hike the trail on the south side of the Sandusky River from late fall to early spring.”

Batory has been a writer for many years, has been published in several magazines, and has published a variety other books.

To order this book contact the Crawford Park District Office, 2401 State Route 598, Crestline, OH 44827; CPD; 419-683-9000.

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