Column: Indiana’s role in architectural history rocks

It is one of Indiana’s best-kept secrets. Limestone quarried from three Indiana counties is responsible for some of America’s most impressive structures.

It was used to build the Empire State Building, the Pentagon and the Indiana State Capitol. It bedecks the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina, the Tribune Tower in Chicago and the Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills.

According to the Indiana Limestone Institute of America, “Indiana limestone projects exist in every American city, in smaller towns and villages, in Canada and in every type of atmosphere.”

Here’s why. Although limestone is sedimentary rock that can be found anywhere there was an ancient sea, Indiana’s is considered some of the best for construction. It is more durable than other types, has consistent neutral color and can be cut into large blocks or carved in fine detail.


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