Welcome to The Stone Trust

Established in southern Vermont in 2010, The Stone Trust’s mission is to preserve and advance the art and craft of dry stone walling.  We do this through an expanding program of educational events and outreach projects. The Stone Trust is a multifaceted resource engaged in preserving the natural use of plentiful stone in simple, gratifying ways.

The Stone Trust Center is the only facility in North America that provides year round educational and DSWA certification opportunities for all levels and abilities. The Stone Trust is a 501(c)3 Nonprofit Organization. It relies on contributions from people like you to keep it’s programs going. Help us continue to preserve and advance the art and craft of Dry Stone Walling!

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From the Blog
    foundations-2
    Master Class: Foundations Part 2
    Posted May 12, 2017

    In the last edition of Stonechat the basic principles of building foundations out of reasonably regular shaped stone were dealt with. Here we take a look at what to do with essentially triangular shaped stones.

    In part 1 the need for adjacent stones to butt up against each other with as much of their internal edges touching as possible was dealt with. This reduces the chance of stones being forced out of the wall. Triangular stones can present a problem in achieving this.

    The diagram left, taken from a photograph of some foundations constructed out of oolitic’. limestone, illustrates how to deal with these. The ideal is to find a stone to match the slope of the triangle, butting tightly with it. This is not always possible and the important thing is not to place two triangular stones next to each other. Try to ensure that the stone next to the point of a triangl


    Summer-2007-003-650x290
    An Evening of Dry Stone with Sally Hodgson – Taking place on May 20th!
    Posted May 12, 2017

    Sally Hodgson will be giving the key note presentation at our Evening of Dry Stone Event. The presentation is titled “The Adventures of a Dry Stone Waller” – looking at walls and stone structures around the world, including the scholarship she received from the Winston Churchill Trust. Sally’s talk will be fully illustrated and is both humorous and enthusiastic!

    Sally is one of only 3 women ever to have attained Master Craftswomen (Level 4) Certification. She is the only certified Master Craftswomen still active in walling, and the only women ever to be come a Dry Stone Walling Examiner. Sally currently runs a dry stone walling training facility in England with several other wallers, and is also a farmer in Derbyshire England.


    new area - 1
    Volunteers Needed!
    Posted May 12, 2017

    The Stone Trust Needs Your Help!
    Wed. and Thurs. May 17 and 18, 9am – 4pm

    We are looking for as many volunteers as possible to help with getting ready for the May 19 – 21 workshops!

    The key tasks will be:

    Moving stone in preparation for our new wall in the Masters Park
    Shaping stones for building cheek ends
    Preparing the site for our stairs workshop (4 sets of stairs!)


    DSWA standardization - 1
    Photos and More from the Examiners Standardization
    Posted May 2, 2017

    In addition to being Certified Master Craftsmen, Examiners for dry stone wall certification tests need to attend the Standardization event at least twice every 6 years. There is a lot to being an examiner and to the standardization event. The standardization event is based around a test day where actual test candidates are taking their tests. Examiners mark each wall as one would during a normal test day, but don’t confer on the marks. Until the following day when all the examiners marks are tallied. The examiners than discuss what why they what they saw and why they marked the way they did. This discussion allows all examiners to be able to score as evenly as possible.


    Menno
    Waller of the Month: Menno Braam
    Posted May 2, 2017

    Menno Braam, first began working with stone in 2001. He quickly found himself drawn to its creative possibilities, and also its potential permanence. Over the years as he has developed his skills, he’s striven to maintain a balance between aesthetics and structure. His experiences so far have led to several awards, and have given him the opportunity to meet and work with some of the best master craftsmen in the world.


    stringlines-video
    What’s so Cool About Batter Frames?
    Posted April 29, 2017

    Professional wallers build their walls with smooth even faces, and they do this while walling fast. Understanding the proper use of batter frames and string lines is what makes this possible. Check out the video series below to see a few of some of the tips and and techniques that will be shown in next weekend’s String line and batter frame workshop.


    Tools for sale at The Stone Trust
    The Stone Trust Sells Tools!
    Posted April 18, 2017

    Did you know The Stone Trust now sells tools and supplies useful for all wallers?

    We currently sell tools from Trow and Holden, Rebit, Micon, Sencore, & Kraft.


    drystone-construction-5
    Waller of the Month: Daniel Arabella
    Posted April 17, 2017

    Daniel Arabella has been passionately bringing traditional drystone methods to the Midwest for seven years and incorporating it into the projects he builds for his business: Arabella Stone Co. Daniel’s extensive background in the arts and construction industries provides a cohesive of blend skills and a fresh approach to a traditional craft. Daniel takes an artisan’s approach to his projects and puts his heart into his work so that he can create a masterpiece for each client.


    April workshops - 39
    April 8 & 9 Workshop Success
    Posted April 12, 2017

    It was a busy weekend at The Stone Trust.  Over April 8&9, we had four workshops with a total of 7 instructors 58 participants!  Walling was introduced to 32 people at indoor workshops. Instructors Michael Murphy, Torben Larsen, and Michael Weitzner led participants through the fundamentals of building dry stone walls.
     
    Outside our biggest ever retaining wall workshop ever took place, rebuilding a 28 ft long wall over 5 ft high.  This was taught by Brian Post and Benjamin Maron.  On Sunday, our new full day stone shaping curriculum was a great success.  With participants learning everything from basic hammer techniques to using power diamond saws.  Instructors, Brian Post, Seth Harris, Torben Larsen, along with  Jorden Keys from tool manufacturer Trow and Holden,  made for a great student to teacher ratio.  Check out a few of the Highlights below.  There are lots more photos and videos available here too.


    STONE SHAPING - 39
    2017 workshops begin
    Posted April 4, 2017

    Despite the late season snows, 2017 dry stone walling workshops have begun. On Friday March 31st, as the snow was coming down outside, 19 people were learning the craft at our contractors dry stone walling workshop. Braving the snow storm to get here, they learned the fundamentals of dry stone wall construction.

    Check out all the pictures below. Thanks to Judy Rand for volunteering and taking all the photos, and the great instructors Jared Flynn, TJ Mora and Brian Post


Upcoming Stone Trust Events
    Eureka Rd Workshop Site
    June 23rd 2017 Site Prep Workshop at Eureka Rd. (Springfield VT)
    Friday June 23, 2017

    Set on a 200 acre property of field and forest, this is a fantastic location to learn the craft of dry stone walling. This is a site preparation workshop that is intended to be paired with the dry stone wall building workshop happening on the following two days. This workshop can also be taken independently of the weekend wall building workshop. In this workshop participants will learn the needed site preparation for building a wall. Participants will be lead through discussions of sourcing and selection stone to use, and preparing the foundation. For the better part of the day, participants will be learn from and working along side the instructors setting up batter frames and sorting stone for building.


    Walling Workshop Sept. 2014
    June 24-25 2017 stone wall workshop at Eureka Rd. (Springfield VT)
    Friday June 24 & 25, 2017

    Set on a 200 acre property of field and forest, this is a fantastic location to learn the craft of dry stone walling. This dry stone walling workshop will teach how to go about building a dry stone wall. It is intended to be taken as a stand alone workshop or can be paired with the site preparation workshop happening the day before. In this workshop participants will learn how build a traditional dry stone wall in a real world, field wall, setting. Learning how to make the best use of the available stone will be a key part of this workshop. Participants will be guided through setting foundation stones, working with guide strings, building the first lift, placing through stones, building the 2nd lift, and and setting cope stones.


    2011-09-21 17.39.26
    July 14th 2017 Site Prep Workshop at Eureka Rd. (Springfield VT)
    Friday July 14, 2017

    Set on a 200 acre property of field and forest, this is a fantastic location to learn the craft of dry stone walling. This is a site preparation workshop that is intended to be paired with the dry stone wall building workshop happening on the following two days. This workshop can also be taken independently of the weekend wall building workshop. In this workshop participants will learn the needed site preparation for building a wall. Participants will be lead through discussions of sourcing and selection stone to use, and preparing the foundation. For the better part of the day, participants will be learn from and working along side the instructors setting up batter frames and sorting stone for building.


    Walling Workshop Sept. 2014
    July 15-16, 2017 stone wall workshop at Eureka Rd. (Springfield VT)
    Saturday & Sunday, July 15-16, 2017

    Set on a 200 acre property of field and forest, this is a fantastic location to learn the craft of dry stone walling. This dry stone walling workshop will teach how to go about building a dry stone wall. It is intended to be taken as a stand alone workshop or can be paired with the site preparation workshop happening the day before. In this workshop participants will learn how build a traditional dry stone wall in a real world, field wall, setting. Learning how to make the best use of the available stone will be a key part of this workshop. Participants will be guided through setting foundation stones, working with guide strings, building the first lift, placing through stones, building the 2nd lift, and and setting cope stones.


    Dry Stone Retaining Wall Course
    Retaining Wall Workshop: One Day Outdoor (Eureka Rd, Springfield, VT)
    Saturday, August 12, 2017

    Here in the North East, many of the walls people are building are retaining walls. While all the principals of a free standing wall apply there are additional rules and methods to follow when building retaining walls. The focus needs to be on a sound structure that will last for generations. The stone may be round field stone or flatter ledge stone. The rules and principals learned here can be applied to all retaining walls whether hand-built or built with large stones and equipment.


    two day level 1 - 9
    Introductory Workshop: One Day Outdoor 8/12/17 (Eureka Rd, Springfield, VT)
    Saturday, August 12, 2017

    This workshop is perfect for the homeowner or enthusiast looking to start learning about how to build dry stone walls. If you are looking to learn more before starting to build a wall at home or trying to educate yourself before hiring someone else to build a wall. This is the workshop for you. It is great introduction for landscapers who are looking to get into dry stone walling.

    Over the course of the day each participant will build about 25 sq. ft. of wall (one side), using flat ledge stone. Participants will learn all the basic rules of structural walling that can be applied to any type of stone and project. The different type of stone used is the primary difference between this workshop and the indoor introductory workshops.


    Stone Shaping Course 2016 group photo at The Stone Trust
    Stone Shaping Workshop: One Day Outdoor (Eureka Rd, Springfield, VT)
    Sunday, August 13, 2017

    This workshop will spend the day learning about how to shape stones for use in dry stone walls. Participants will be introduced to a variety of stone types, and how to work with them. Both hand and power tools will be demonstrated and used. The stone shaping will focus on efficient practices, learning how to look at a stone and judge how to shape it, as well as proper use and care of tools. Typical types of stone will likely include, granite, slate, local quarried schist, gneiss ‘field stone’ and more. Participants are encouraged to bring samples of their local stone to practice shaping, as well as any tools they would like to learn how to better use.


    two day level 1 - 9
    Introductory Workshop: One Day Outdoor 8/13/17 (Eureka Rd, Springfield, VT)
    Sunday, August 13, 2017

    This workshop is perfect for the homeowner or enthusiast looking to start learning about how to build dry stone walls. If you are looking to learn more before starting to build a wall at home or trying to educate yourself before hiring someone else to build a wall. This is the workshop for you. It is great introduction for landscapers who are looking to get into dry stone walling.

    Over the course of the day each participant will build about 25 sq. ft. of wall (one side), using flat ledge stone. Participants will learn all the basic rules of structural walling that can be applied to any type of stone and project. The different type of stone used is the primary difference between this workshop and the indoor introductory workshops.


    Seth Harris instructing the 2016 Test Prep workshop
    Fall 2017 Test Preparation Workshop: One Day Indoor
    Friday, September 8, 2017

    Prepare for your certification test! This workshop is perfect those planning to test on Monday. Learn tips and techniques to help you pass your test, all while practicing on the stone walls used for the tests. A must-take workshop for those planning to go for the difficult Level 2 test. Take this workshop and receive a discount on a Saturday or Sunday Pre-test, before testing on Monday.

    Seth Harris is a Level 2 certified waller and certified instructor. He has been a test site coordinator at The Stone Trust on several occasions and is well versed in what it takes to pass a test. There is nothing better than a day of tips from the pros! In addition to dry stone walling Seth is also an accomplished fine woodworker, blacksmith, excavator and more. He is the owner of Foxchair Mountain Craftsmen in Springfield VT.


    Irregular field gathered flagging
    Introductory Patio Flagging and Flat-work: One Day Outdoor
    Friday, September 8, 2017

    Learn the fundamentals of patio construction in a fun, energetic, hands-on environment. While not strictly dry stone walling, flat-work is a common part of many projects. Doing a good job starts with a good foundation, and finishes with an attractive pattern of stone. This workshop will teach you how to have a workshop that stays flat and attractive for decades.


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