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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Frankfort in Franklin County, Kentucky — The American South (East South Central)
 

Dry Stone Masonry in Kentucky

 
 
Dry Stone Masonry in Kentucky Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, December 30, 2012
1. Dry Stone Masonry in Kentucky Marker
Inscription. Dry stone masonry is an ancient building tradition and occurs wherever rock is available and the craft tradition is known. Kentucky rock fences are a distinct style of folk architecture, locally called “rock fences” even though they are mostly built of quarried “stone.” They are built entirely without mortar, using the forces of friction and gravity to hold them together.

The continuing construction of these fences serves as tribute to the skills of ethnic groups who practiced these building techniques. Early settlers of Scots-Irish origin built the first rock fences in Kentucky. Later, in the mid-1800’s, crews of itinerant Irish masons built many of the rock fences that bordered the newly created turnpikes of the Commonwealth. Following the Civil War, black freedmen took up the craft and became well-known rock fence builders. Today, the craft is alive and well, and the skills are transferring yet again to another generation.

The largest collection of rock fences is in central Kentucky. The diagram shows the counties with the most rock fences. Counties shown in red represent the highest concentration in the Inner Bluegrass area, while counties shown in blue represent areas with fewer concentrations.

The site map below shows the locations of dry-laid structures in this park. All
Dry Stone Masonry in Kentucky Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, December 30, 2012
2. Dry Stone Masonry in Kentucky Marker
the structures were built beginning in 1997 by the Dry Stone Conservancy, a non-profit organization with the mission to preserve existing dry stone structures, and to revive and promote the ancient craft of dry-laid stone masonry. The City of Frankfort Parks & Recreation Department funded the construction of the dry-laid structures. Funding and in-kind support for the exhibit panels was provided by the Kentucky Arts Council, the City of Frankfort’s Parks & Recreation Department, and the Dry Stone Conservancy.
 
Erected by Kentucky Arts Council, the City of Frankfort’s Parks & Recreation Department, and the Dry Stone Conservancy.
 
Location. 38° 12.282′ N, 84° 52.691′ W. Marker is in Frankfort, Kentucky, in Franklin County. Marker can be reached from Wilkinson Boulevard (Route 421) north of West Plaza Connector Road (U.S. 127), on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Located along the Riverview Trail in Kentucky River View Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 404 Wilkinson Blvd, Frankfort KY 40601, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Fort Hill Overlooking the Kentucky River (within shouting distance of this marker); Gone But Not Forgotten – Frankfort’s “Craw”
Dry Stone Masonry Exhibit image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, December 30, 2012
3. Dry Stone Masonry Exhibit
(about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Locks and Dams (about 300 feet away); Franks Ford, Fishtrap Island, and Craw (approx. 0.2 miles away); Amos Kendall (1789 - 1869) (approx. 0.3 miles away); Old State House (approx. 0.3 miles away); Emily Thomas Tubman House (approx. 0.3 miles away); The Church of the Ascension (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Frankfort.
 
Also see . . .
1. River View Park. (Submitted on December 31, 2012.)
2. Dry Stone Conservancy. (Submitted on December 31, 2012.)
 
Categories. Man-Made FeaturesRoads & Vehicles
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on December 31, 2012, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 285 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on December 31, 2012, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.
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