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  • Capt. Middleton Lee Perry, Sr. (CSA) (1814 - 1892)
    Born in Jefferson County, Indiana on December 15, 1814, Middleton Perry was the son of Franklin and Rebecca Harrison Perry, both natives of Virginia. His parents were raised in Kentucky but moved to In...
  • Johannes Wilhelm Grote (1849 - 1895)
    Johannes Wilhelm "John" Grote was born in Hanover, Stadt Hannover, Niedersachsen, Germany. He was the son of George Grote and Nena Zieranberg. He married Adeline Amalie Sabiers on 22 Dec 1877 in Lo...
  • John “the mason” Smith, Sr. (c.1595 - 1663)
    John Smith II (the mason) was President of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations in 1649. The colony then consisted of four towns: Portsmouth, Newport, Providence, and Warwick. In 1652,...
  • Bersvend S. Haftorsen (1834 - 1912)
    Bersvend Hafterson Uglem, aka Hafterson (Haftorson); s/o Hafter Anders. Uglem & Marit Bersvendsdtr. Eidem; md. Anna Eriksdtr. Balstad, 27 Dec 1858 Selbustrand, Selbu, Norway; Emigrated 1865 to Allamake...
  • Rev Sampson Greenbriar Sites (1843 - 1916)
    Rev Sampson Greenbriar Sites BIRTH 1843 DEATH 1916 (aged 72–73) BURIAL Sites Cemetery Dorcas, Grant County, West Virginia, Mr Sites was born May 3rd, 1843, in Hardy County, Virginia, now Grant Cou...

Stonemasons

Add stonemasons, stonecutters, and other stone workers to this project. There is a separate project for brick and tile makers. You can visit HistoryLink to find out which projects include your ancestors.

Also called dykers, freemasons, masons, stone cutters, and stone workers.

Includes banker masons, fixer masons, hodsmen, memorial masons, monumental masons, millstone cutters, posters, quarriers, quarry men, rockmen, rubbishers, rubblers, sawyers, scapplers, shot firers, stone carvers, skip makers.

The craft of stonemasonry (or stonecraft) has existed since humanity could use and make tools - creating buildings, structures, and sculpture using stone from the earth. These materials have been used to construct many of the long-lasting, ancient monuments, artifacts, cathedrals, and cities in a wide variety of cultures. Famous works of stonemasonry include the Taj Mahal, Cusco's Incan Wall, Easter Island's statues, the Egyptian Pyramids, Angkor Wat, Borobudur, Tihuanaco, Tenochtitlan, Persepolis, the Parthenon, Stonehenge, and Chartres Cathedral.

Masonry is the craft of shaping rough pieces of rock into accurate geometrical shapes, at times simple, but some of considerable complexity, and then arranging the resulting stones, often together with mortar, to form structures.

  • Sawyers cut these rough blocks into cuboids, to required size with diamond-tipped saws. The resulting block if ordered for a specific component is known as sawn six sides (SSS).
  • Banker masons are workshop-based, and specialize in working the stones into the shapes required by a building's design, this set out on templets and a bed mould. They can produce anything from stones with simple chamfers to tracery windows, detailed mouldings and the more classical architectural building masonry.
  • Carvers cross the line from craft to art, and use their artistic ability to carve stone into foliage, figures, animals or abstract designs.
  • Fixer masons specialize in the fixing of stones onto buildings, using lifting tackle, and traditional lime mortars and grouts.
  • Memorial masons or monumental masons carve gravestones and inscriptions.

Source: Adapted from Stonemasonry at Wikipedia

Journeyman Stone Cutters Association of North America

"The Journeyman Stonecutters Association of North America is the oldest, and perhaps the smallest, active union in North America. Based on a tradition dating back to the masons lodges of the middle ages, the International was founded in 1853. Many of the individual locals began in the 1820's and 30's, and the Washington Stonecutters are said to have marched as a body at the laying of the cornerstone of the U.S. Capitol in 1792. In the late 1960's, due to changing architectural tastes and decreased interest in ornamentation, the union had become quite small. At that time it merged with the Laborers International Union of North America (LIUNA)."

On rare occasion you may be able to find old copies of the Stonecutters Journal, the union newspaper, in libraries or archives. The Journal often had anecdotes about old stonecutters, lists of members who were delinquent in their dues, or reports about jobs. Occasionally there would be a list of local union officials, and sometimes death notices of members. Bear in mind that, at the turn of the century, there were tens of thousands of stonecutters and carvers working in the United States. Chicago alone had over 100 stone mills. The New York local union at one point had around 5000 members, so the occasional list in the Journal of names of a dozen members who hadn't paid their dues isn't too helpful in genealogical research.

Source: Journeyman Stone Cutters Association of North America


St. Castorius is the patron saint of sculptors, stonemasons and stonecutters, and his feast day is November 8th. See also: St. Claude