Granite is prized in the construction industry because of its strength and beauty. How is this rock made and where did it come from? The history of granite countertops in Duluth began millions of years ago.
Granite is classified as a felsic intrusive igneous rock which that is a combination of different minerals that have been mixed and heated over the course of several centuries. Granite is mostly comprised of quartz and alkali feldspar. Other minerals like mica, silica, and alumina are also found in granite. The combination of these minerals determines the color and the amount of crystallization throughout the stone. Magma moving through the earth’s surface is the primary catalyze for the formation of granite. It heats and churns the minerals deep underground. As it cools, it forms large, solid chunks of granite called instructions. Earthquakes and moving landmasses have forced these intrusions to the surface forming mountains of granite around the world. The mountain range of Huangshan, China, is an example of some of the oldest granite intrusions in the world.
Some of the earliest uses of granite as a construction material have withstood the test of time in places like Egypt. Granite intrusions are usually very large with virtually no internal structures or veins that could compromise its strength. This is why the Egyptians chose it to make their pyramids. Menkaure’s Pyramid, made around 26th century BC, was made of large slabs of limestone and granite. Inside the Great Pyramid of Giza, archeologists found a granite sarcophagus made of red Aswan granite. Cleopatra’s Needles–currently on display in London and New York City–were carved in the 12th century BC from red granite by Pharaoh Thutmose III. The Romans used granite from to form foundations and columns of the Roman Forum in Merida, Spain, in 25 BC as well as the Pantheon in Rome, Italy in 126 AD.
Granite in the Modern Era
Granite is still used as a foundational material for modern construction, but new technology allows more finite applications. Granite is a popular choice for gravestones, memorial artwork, and commercial signage. If you want a stone that will stand the test of time while adding beauty and value to your home, granite countertops from Duluth are guaranteed to last a lifetime.