Hand-Carving a Tracery Window at Fort Washington Collegiate Church in Manhattan

I absolutely love historic stonework, especially when it comes to churches and colleges that pre-date even the founding fathers. This last month, we were able to work on the Fort Washington Collegiate Church in Manhattan by hand-carving a tracery window. While this specific building was erected in 1907, it is actually a part of a much bigger group of churches, called the Collegiate Churches of New York. These churches date as far back as 1623. It’s All in the Details A church with that much history demands detail and attention with any addition or renovation. My time was well spent,…

3 Things You Need to Know About Stonemasonry

Driving down the east coast, it is hard for me to look away from all of the history and beautiful architecture around me. This country, and most civilizations around the world, have something in common with one another. 70% were built with stone. From their churches, their monuments, and their homes to their schools, streets, and the foundation of the civilization itself. Stonemasonry has been around for thousands of years. As I reflect back on the history of Petrillo Stone, it is very gratifying to be a part of such an important part of history. There are a lot of…

Stonework From Around the World

By now, it should be well known that I love neat facts, history, and stonemasonry. This month, I decided to combine those loves and post about some of my favorite stonework from around the world. Enjoy! English Cathedral Stonework Some of the most eye-catching pillars of architecture from the old world are the cathedrals stamped across England. One of the most noteworthy for stonemasons, such as our team at Petrillo Stone, is the Exeter Cathedral, properly known as the Cathedral Church of Saint Peter in Exeter. Exeter is an Anglican cathedral, and the seat of the Bishop of Exeter, in the…

Carving and Installing Limestone Work at Fordham University

The team at Petrillo Stone was recently contacted by Fordham University. They were interested in adding two limestone carvings to their Rose Hill Campus in the Bronx, NY. Our team started hand-carving a cross that was 10 ft by 8 ft and a University Seal that had a 12 feet diameter. It took us a few months to carve the cross and the seal at our Mount Vernon, NY facility. But once they were ready, we installed them in less than a week at the new McShane Campus center at Fordham University. Get a closer look:

The Oldest Map of Europe Found Carved into Stone

From time to time I like to feature unique stories about stone and masonry. Before pen and paper, our ancestors had to use the resources available to best record information. The most common way was carving important information into stone and stone walls. Recently, a slab of stone with engraved intricate lines and motifs dating as far back to the Bronze Age has been revealed to be Europe’s oldest map, researchers say. As reported by CNN, researchers used high-resolution 3D surveys and photogrammetry to examine the Saint-Belec Slab – an engraved and partly broken piece of stone that was discovered…

Construction on a 50-Story Office Tower in New York City

The team at Petrillo Stone was excited to recently be awarded a multimillion-dollar contract for our most recent project with the CommonWealth Partners’ property in the lobby of their 50-story office at 787 Seventh Avenue in New York City. This building houses an athletic club, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, two restaurants, a parking garage, and offers direct access to transportation. Our contract consists of removing and salvaging stone benches, planters, and lighting, known as Flanagan Sculpture. Our team is drafting, supplying, and installing over 20,000 square feet of Avorio Limestone, Calacatta Marble, Absolute Black Granite, Porcelain, Ceramic Tile, and Silestone….

The Restoration of Notre Dame De Paris

On April 15, 2019, Notre-Dame de Paris suffered extensive damage. It’s spire, lead roof, and oak frame were destroyed from a fire at the iconic cathedral. Thankfully, the main structure of the building was unharmed. It was apparent that the fire started from an electrical short. Following protocol, the firefighters knew to keep the water pressure low and avoid spraying the stained glass windows so the cold water wouldn’t shatter the hot glass. They were able to save the buttresses, towers, facade, walls, and stained glass windows. Restoring of an 850-Year-Old Cathedral President Emmanuel Macron said the cathedral would be…

Creating 14 Limestone Carvings Depicting Ignatius Loyola

The team at Petrillo Stone recently used Indiana limestone to create these 14 carvings depicting the life of Ignatius Loyola. We did this using the original molds from the 1950s. Ralph Petrillo is pictured next to one of the carvings. Ignatius Loyola was a Spanish priest who co-founded the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits). He was born in 1491 to a family of minor nobility. He was one of 13 children. When he was 30 years old, he was injured during a battle with the French. While recuperating from his injury, Ignatius began reading about Jesus and the Saints which…

6 Types of Stone We Commonly Use for Our Projects

As you might guess, not all stone is created equal. Certain varieties of stone are not as useful for building materials. At Petrillo Stone, we commonly use these 6 materials in our projects: Basalt: This stone is usually between medium and fine grain. It’s commonly used to build roads, bridge piers, dams, and river walls. Granite: Granite has a crystalline structure, and the grain can be anywhere from fine to coarse. This stone is mostly made up of quartz and feldspar, with a little bit of mica and amphibole. Sandstone: When combined with silica cement, this material is used to…

Working on an Exterior Wall at Fordham University

Ralph Petrillo and the rest of the Petrillo Stone team enjoyed working on the exterior of Fordham University’s Lincoln Center. Built in the 1950s, this beautiful masonry building is home to the Metropolitan Opera and the New York City Ballet. It’s located a block east of Broadway, also near Central Park, in Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen.

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