Rock Products

JUN 2019

Rock Products is the aggregates industry's leading source for market analysis and technology solutions, delivering critical content focusing on aggregates-processing equipment; operational efficiencies; management best practices; comprehensive market

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26 • ROCKproducts • June 2019 Mining in Paris Mining in Paris goes back to Roman times when the city was called Lutetia. Julius Caesar came, saw, conquered, and built Roman roads with the local limestone. Later Romans quarried the stone and built theatres, aqueducts, baths, and temples. The earliest writ- ten record of mining is from the 13 th century when there were 18 quarrying operations in Paris. As underground mines became depleted, the city expanded over them. Centuries passed, and builders lost track of the extensive mining cavities under the city. Paris eventually expe- rienced some major mine collapses. At one point in the 18 th century, a city street dropped 100 ft. into the earth. The Louvre and Notre Dame are built with Lutetian stone. Nothing equals the enduring beauty of stone. At once substantive and transcen- dent, stone doesn't sit on the landscape, it emerges from it. How many glass and steel structures have we seen built and razed in our lifetimes. All over the world we watched in horror, as the great cathedral was engulfed in flames. Yet, here it stands, its towers undaunted, its flying buttresses splayed like spider legs and its color undiminished. These once were rocks in the ground, and in God's infinite timeline, they may once again become rubble, but not today. Scaffolding surrounds Notre Dame, and repairs to the roof are already under- way. The construction of Notre Dame started in a quarry, and one day, like its builders, the queen of French cathe- drals will return to dust, but for now these stones still rise toward heaven, a yet enduring measure of eternity. S Secrets of Notre Dame

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