Providence nonprofit to sell historic marble from old State House

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WLNE) — Farm Fresh Rhode Island is a nonprofit food hub that helps connect farmers to eaters throughout the region. When they began construction, thousands of pounds of marble were discovered.

“When we started building we were doing a lot of environmental remediation so we were figuring out what was under the asphalt and much to our surprise, we dug up a lot of marble,” said Nikki Ayres, the nonprofit’s director of giving.

When Farm Fresh RI first discovered the buried treasure on their property, there were marble pieces smaller than your fist, all the way up to slabs of more than 3,000 pounds.

Ayres explained, “Also being able to use some of these larger pieces as bird baths, in your garden, landscaping needs, I think that is a really nice way to use it.”

Where Farm Fresh RI sits was once the Norcross Brothers’ stone yard and mill.

The Providence Journal wrote in part in 1898 “all of the stone for the State House has been cut and shaped to fit every part of the grand structure.”

“The parcel of land we had purchased was actually where all of the marble for the State House was cut in 1898,” said Ayres.

The nonprofit has used the marble slabs to make things like benches and landscaping focal points.

Farm Fresh RI invites Rhode Islanders to come out to the marble market from June 9 through June 11 to purchase a piece.

“We are offering that marble up for sale to the public so that anyone can own a piece of the Rhode Island State House history,” said Ayres.

All of the funds from the marble market will go back to Farm Fresh RI to help connect the community to local foods.

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