Factors of Decay
There are many factors that lead to lead to the decay of gravestones. Vandalism is the one factor almost everyone knows about because it often makes the newspapers and the 11 o'clock news broadcasts.  However, there are many more factors to consider.

         > Geographic location, rainfall rates, freeze/thaw cycles, toxic pollution, storms, and acid rain all                take their toll.

         > Trees, roots, and vegetation also add to the decaying cycle.

         > Natural decomposition of the stone, sugaring, and small spider cracks has a detrimental
            effect on the stone's structural integrity.

         > Improper or negligent use of mowers, weed trimmers, and chemicals.

Although some of these can be prevented, most cannot be. Proper maintenance and care is essential in preserving these stones.

Stone Setters  5113 Vickery Chapel Rd.  Greensboro, N.C.  e-mail: stonesetters@northstate.net