Thursday, March 26, 2009

Louis Crivellaro: Stone Carver 1902-1978

These granite monuments are located at the Hope Cemetery in Barre, Vermont. My husband's great uncle Louis Crivellaro, "Uncle Louie," carved his own monument as seen in the top picture. He was the son of an Italian stone carver and he immigrated to Barre, Vermont from Switzerland with his family when he was just 2 years old. He spent almost 60 years as a stone carver, following in his father's footsteps and starting in the trade when he was just 17 years old. Louis never retired and lived way past the average age of the stone cutters he worked with through the years. An article was written about him in the May 15, 1977 edition of the Vermonter. In the article, titled Louis Crivellaro,a craftsman schooled in the art of living, he said, "I have no regrets, I have no problems, no regrets at all." He also said "I've learned to sacrifice. I've learned to do without. So nothing seems to bother me."
My husband has fond memories of his uncle and his little camp in Vermont. He was given Louis as his middle name, which may have given him a little extra connection to his uncle. Louis Crivellaro was known as the Old Man of Maple Hill. He owned a camp on 30 hilltop acres in Plainfield, Vt. He stayed there more often than at his home in Barre with his wife and daughter. The camp was a trailer that was untidy, yet it was described as having an atmosphere of warmth and hospitality. The collection of found items in random arrangement on the property kept Louis busy when not working at carving granite.
The article pictures him standing next to the monument he carved for himself and his family. He passed away only 8 short months after the article was published. My husband, son and I took a trip to Barre to see this cemetery as well as nearby "Rock of Ages" granite quarry.
When we entered the 65 acre cemetery, we first started walking to the right. We came upon the monument in the bottom picture. This is for Louis' father, Napoleone Crivellaro 1870-1952, his mother Emelia 1861-1953 and brother Ezio 1899-1918. We then walked towards the back of the cemetery, down the entire length and zig-zagged through the middle. We looked forever for Uncle Louis' monument. Several times my husband asked out loud "Where are you Uncle Louie?" Each time he asked it, he then said to me that Uncle Louie is probably way out in the front right where we came in. Even though he said this, we kept going on our systematic search through the cemetery. After much searching, we headed back towards the front of the cemetery towards where we came in...there was the Crivellaro monument! If only my husband would have listened to the answer that he received from Uncle Louie we would have saved some energy! Visit the following websites to see more beautiful monuments in the Hope Cemetery and the Rock of Ages Quarry. Rock of Ages Museum and Quarry Rock of Ages Museum and Quarry

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