Building Stones of America: 50 Years of the NIST Stone Test Wall.
Building Stones of America: 50 Years of the NIST Stone
Stutzman, P. E.; Raz, J.
NCPTT Notes, No. 36, 7,9,11, July 2000.
research facilities; weather effects; cements; climate
In 1880 the Census Office and the National Museum in
Washington, DC conducted a study of building stones of
the United States and collected a set of reference
specimens from working quarries. This collection was
merged with the Centennial Collection of US Building
Stones that was first displayed at the 1876 Centennial
Exhibition in Philadelphia. Descriptions fo producing
quarries, commercial building stones, and their use in
construction across the country were compiled and
reported in the 10th census of the United States in
1880. This collection of stones, now augmented with
building stones from other countries, was placed on
display in the Smithsonian Institution. In 1942, a
committee was appointed to consider whether any
worthwhile use could be made of the collection. It was
decided that a study of actual weathering on such a
great variety of stone would yield valuable information.
A plan was developed for building a test wall at the
National Bureau of Standards (NBS) as a cooperative
study between NBS and ASTM Committee C-18 on Building
Stone. Subsequently, in 1948 a test wall was
constructed at the NBS site in Washington, DC.