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Stories in stone : travels through urban geology

Author: David B Williams
Publisher: Seattle : University of Washington Press, 2019. ©2009
Edition/Format:   Print book : English : Paperback editionView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Most people do not think to observe geology from the sidewalks of a major city, but all David B. Williams has to do is look at building stone in any urban center to find a range of rocks equal to any assembled by plate tectonics. In 'Stories in Stone', he takes you on explorations to find 3.5-billion-year-old rock that looks like swirled pink-and-black taffy, a gas station made of petrified wood, and a Florida fort  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: David B Williams
ISBN: 0295746459 9780295746456
OCLC Number: 1103983070
Description: x, 260 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: "The most hideous stone ever quarried" : New York brownstone --
The granite city : Boston granite --
Poetry in stone : Carmel granite --
Deep time in Minnesota : Minnesota gneiss --
The clam that changed the world : Florida coquina --
America's building stone : Indiana limestone --
Pop rocks, pilfered fossils, and Phillips petroleum : Colorado petrified wood --
The trouble with Michelangelo's favorite stone : Carrara marble --
Reading, writing, and roofing : East Coast slate --
"Autumn 20,000 years ago" : Italian travertine.
Responsibility: David B. Williams.

Abstract:

"Most people do not think to observe geology from the sidewalks of a major city, but all David B. Williams has to do is look at building stone in any urban center to find a range of rocks equal to any assembled by plate tectonics. In 'Stories in Stone', he takes you on explorations to find 3.5-billion-year-old rock that looks like swirled pink-and-black taffy, a gas station made of petrified wood, and a Florida fort that has withstood three hundred years of attacks and hurricanes, despite being made of a stone that has the consistency of a granola bar. Williams also weaves in the cultural history of stone, explaining why a white fossil-rich limestone from Indiana became the only building stone used in all fifty states; how in 1825 the construction of the Bunker Hill Monument led to America's first commercial railroad; and why when the same kind of marble used by Michaelangelo clad a Chicago skyscraper it warped so much after nineteen years that all 44,000 panels of it had to be replaced. A finalist for the Washington State Book Award, this love letter to building stone brings life to geology you can see in the structures of every city"--Page 4 of cover.

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Williams' record of human dreams worked in stone is as richly textured and full of life's imprints as a fossil-rich piece of travertine. * Booklist * Stories in Stone is chock full of fascinating Read more...

 
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