Ruins of Seneca Stone Cutting Mill. Seneca, Montgomery County, Maryland.
Rays of light from the setting sun illuminate the ruins of Seneca Stone Cutting Mill.
Located on the banks of Seneca Creek and the Potomac River, Seneca Quarry provided Washington D.C. with a steady supply of sandstone that was both durable and beautiful for it’s unique bright-crimson hue. This "Seneca redstone", finely cut and polished in this mill, is everywhere throughout the District, from the Smithsonian Castle, Cabin John Bridge, Arlington National Cemetery’s boundary wall and Luther Place Church in Thomas Circle to numerous houses throughout Dupont Circle and Adams Morgan.
Beginning in the 1870’s, The mill’s fortunes declined through financial mismanagement and flood damages. By the turn of the century the quality of the quarried stone had degraded significantly, and the victorian architecture that relied on material such as seneca redstone fell out of popularity. The Seneca quarry shut down operations for good in 1901, leaving the mill to crumble and decay.