Granite Carving, Vinalhaven

Granite was king on Penoboscot Bay islands in the last quarter of the 1800s. After granite was quarried, it was often carved with decorations or carved into statues such as eagles. The work attracted skilled stone cutters from Italy and other European nations to carve figures in the granite for public buildings and churches.

On the left are the tops (capitals) for the 44 three-story columns for the US Customs House in New York City, completed in 1907. To the right, carvers work on the lintels for the fourth story windows. The Sands Stoneyard at Sands Cove on the west side of Carver's Harbor was where stone from the Sand Quarry was transformed into architectural sculpture. This was all part of the Bodwell Granite Company, one of the nation's largest and Vinalhaven's principal employer from 1871 to 1910.

Geographic Location: 
Vinalhaven, Maine