Friday, November 03, 2023

Geology of the National Parks in Pictures - Saint-Gaudens NHS

My next post about the Geology of the National Parks Through Pictures is way back in the day before we had moved to Utah (and back to New York). 

You can find more Geology of the National Parks Through Pictures as well as my Geological State Symbols Across America series at my website


We had visited Saint-Gaudens in New Hampshire a long time ago (2006), long before I had the intent to do the geology of the National Parks posts. However, even with that, there is not much geological information for this site. The site is the former home to American sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens who passed away in 1907 and his home was eventually transformed into the National Park that is seen today. 

As is common in New Hampshire, the park is set within a glacial landscape that has since been changed through time to be a forested area of gentle hills. 

Beneath the park is the Gile Mountain Formation, a metamorphic rock from the Early Devonian (~400 million years old). The rock is comprised of gray to tan metawacke and schist or phyllite. This is the Adams Memorial, a bronze cast statue sitting upon a pink and grey granite block designed by Stanford White. 

While Augustus did work in marble a bit, the majority of his work was in bronze. This relief sculpture made out of bronze is the Shaw Memorial set within a frame of concrete (I believe). 

Another bronze statue from around the grounds. This is Admiral Farragut who is standing on a "bluestone" base carved by Stanford White, also of unknown origin. 

And even the sculptures that I did see in marble, I am unable to discover the source of his marble. So while this may be a dead end geologically, it does have pretty artwork. This statue of Diana, may actually be concrete and plaster and not marble.

However, this statue, known as the "Temple", was indeed created out of marble and represents the resting place of Augustus and his family. This statue was carved by a different America sculptor, Kenyon Cox, however the prevenance of the marble for this sculpture is also eluding me. 


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