January 31, 2013

Grand Old Buildings

Posted in Endangered buildings, History, Photos tagged , , , at 9:54 pm by stonebankblog

New York City’s Grand Central Station turned 100 today!

Bells and whistles. Sound the train horns and clap your hands.  Making it to 100 is a great big deal. No, make that a GRAND deal.

Grand Central stands today because preservationists worked hard to save it. And it is 13 years YOUNGER than our charming Stone Bank.

Let’s salute big dreams, big goals and great old buildings.

Grand Central Station in NYC on the day it opened in 1913.

Grand Central Station in NYC on the day it opened in 1913.

This snip came from Grand Central Station’s website. Check it out for great pictures and a cool timeline about the building’s history.

The Stone Bank isn’t as grand in many ways, but it’s a charming touchstone with Bottineau’s history and its founders. Bottineau County Bank had been operating out of the “fine stone bank” for 13 years when Grand Central opened. Amazing to think of the vision the Stone Bank’s founders had to build something that would last a very long time. Our goal is to give it another 100 or more years.

For the Stone Bank, 2013 is going to be a HUGE year. The back of the building will be rebuilt over a new foundation — and soon after it will  get a new interior and a new life.

Join us. Support us. Send us a donation or a story about your connection to the bank. Or tell us your dreams for how the bank should be used.

As always, thanks for reading the Stone Bank Blog.


January 20, 2013

Rock Star Tea

Posted in Bottineau, Friends of Stone Bank, Updates tagged , , , at 9:45 pm by stonebankblog

At this hour in Bottineau, ND, it’s minus 15 degrees!

Great time for a cup of tea!  And if you’re thinking about the Stone Bank, we know you are thinking about Rock Star tea!

Our loyal blog readers and donors Jane and Randy sent this great picture to warm us through a cold winter night.

Stone Bank mug with John Lennon tea bag

John Lennon — a total rock star — takes a dip in a Stone Bank mug.


We gave these mugs away to Stone Bank donors in 2011 — should we bring them back?

How do you take your tea? Hot, with sugar and in a Stone Bank mug?  If you do, that means you deserve a thank you and an extra lump of sugar.

Preservation is rockin’ on the Stone Bank. Thanks for your support and for reading the Stone Bank Blog! And thanks to Jane and Randy for sending us a rock star photo!

January 14, 2013

2012 in review

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , , at 11:21 pm by stonebankblog

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for the Stone Bank Blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 3,300 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 6 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Pushing the Boulder

Posted in Dismantling the back, Endangered buildings, Stone Quotes, Updates, Videos tagged , , , at 1:33 pm by stonebankblog

Historic restoration isn’t an easy road. It’s rugged, and, yet, rugged roads often  lead to the highest reward. That’s how we feel about the  Stone Bank Project.

Here’s a quote from Paul Graham, an entrepreneur, on the value of an idea (or purpose).

The founders who do the best are the type of people who just refuse to fail. Most startups have at least one low point where any reasonable person would give up…. The only people who get through it are the ones who have an unreasonable aversion to failing.

That’s pretty much how we feel about the Stone Bank Project — we are going to see this through. PERIOD.  We are really pleased by a recent uptick in donations. It’s great to have some other cockeyed optimists join the effort.

Mark Briggs puts it this way:

Developing a great idea into a successful business is like pushing a boulder up a hill. The best entrepreneurs — those who successfully reach the top — get to watch the boulder roll down the other side.

Mr. Briggs is writing about business and entrepreneurship — but historic restoration projects — like the Stone Bank — are also a form of entrepreneurship.

So, we are pushing the boulder up the hill — indeed — our stone mason is actually moving boulders to bring the Stone Bank back to life.  Check out this video about moving stone!

By this time next year? We hope to be watching that boulder tumble down the other side. We hope you are there to help us give it the last shove.

Here’s a great video from the day our contractor began pulling down the Stone Bank’s back wall. It’s all up from here.

Thanks for joining us on our journey and thanks for your continued support.

January 4, 2013

Philosopher Stone

Posted in Bottineau, Dismantling the back, Endangered buildings, History, Photos, Stone Work, Updates tagged , , , at 12:01 am by stonebankblog

The first of the year is a time of beginning. Starting over. Reconsidering. Wiping the slate clean or just picking up and getting on with it.

So, that makes it the perfect time for a new stone quote and a couple shots of the Stone Bank — restoration work already in progress.

Make this the year you commit to a project bigger than yourself. Do something great for your community. For posterity. For mankind.

Or just for the heck of it.

Stone Quote No. 6

Another great quote — carved in limestone — from the Peace Chapel at the Intl. Peace Garden

Stone Bank work in Bottineau, ND

Scaffold going up at the Stone Bank. The north wall is coming down soon.

Sizing up the north wall.

The stone mason removed a few stones to check the sturdiness of the wall that abuts the north wall. Good to go.

So, we are continuing — to the end.  When weather permits, work on the Stone Bank will continue.  Scroll through our previous posts to learn more about this great building and the effort to restore it to usefulness.

Watch this space for updates, and thanks for reading the Stone Bank Blog!

Happy New Year!