Pipestone

In a time period so distant it is synonymous with the very beginnings of life, water deposited fine particles of hardened clay.

Through eons of time, heat and pressure solidified these particles into one of the finest carving stones in the world – pipestone. Appalachian Rock Shop and Jewelry Emporium is pleased to offer this special stone, mined from our private quarry in Minnesota, to customers in search of a unique and affordable carving stone.

Deep red to maroon in color and with light snowflake characteristics, Minnesota Pipestone is thought to reflect the earth mother’s soul and is sometimes known as the “stone of peace.” Native Americans have valued pipestone for centuries and it is gaining in popularity with modern day carvers and sculptors.

Rating approximately 2.5 on the Mohrs hardness scale of 1-10, pipestone is slightly harder than the human fingernail and weighs about one pound per ten cubic inches.

Appalachian Rock Shop’s pipestone comes from our privately owned quarry in Pipestone County in southwest Minnesota. Formerly owned by Paul Eich and marketed under the name Gems by Jak, this quarry is now owned by three Pennsylvania geologists, John Crawford, Tom Metarko and Mark Yanoski, each of whom practice various aspects of the earth sciences.

Our Minnesota Pipestone (Catlinite) is the finest quality pipestone in the world. It can be sawed, drilled and carved using common household tools such as hacksaws, drills, files and sandpaper. After cutting and sanding smooth, you may finish pieces by heating the stone and coating it with beeswax, or by using standard lapidary techniques with diamond or other polishing compounds. Designs can then be scratched into the stone using a sharp nail or awl.

Unfortunately, many people attach the name pipestone to other rocks that have little or no physical or chemical relationship to the true material. No other rock combines Minnesota Pipestone's old earth energies and deep spiritual roots with its quality and texture.

Pipestone quarrying in the area of Pipestone National Monument appears to have begun as early as 1200 A.D. Historic accounts speak of the area as "a place of peace" where various Native American tribes would lay down their weapons and quarry the stone for ceremonial pipes. Only Native Americans are permitted to quarry on the Pipestone National Monument site, located a few miles from our quarry. Local accounts tell us that although our quarry is not found on the monument site, various Native Americans also mined here. We believe this unique deposit of pipestone, formed by the Creator, transcends manmade boundaries.

We are honored to share this special stone with you. Please watch our website for future offerings.

Wholesale Pricing Schedule:

To order, please contact us for an estimate