November 24, 2006 – Working off the Feast

There’s nice park nestled within the city limits of Rochester, MN called Quarry Hill. There are ponds, nature center, old quarry relics, caves, lots of fossils, and a huge unmarked cemetery.

Not many November 24 days when shirtsleeves are appropriate attire in Minnesota! Here are the kids after the hike up to the top of the quarry. It stopped producing in the 1950’s.

There are also many caves – some of the bigger ones which were used by the state hospital for food storage from the 1880’s to the the 1940’s. There’s a big field within the park where the state hospital buried patients who died. There are over 2,000 people buried in the field, without markers. They were buried until 1965 when the hospital closed. There are efforts to mark the gravesites appropriately.

There’s also a great 20 acre Oak Savanna on the highest point overlooking the city.

2 thoughts on “November 24, 2006 – Working off the Feast

  1. Is it true that the patients from The rochester state hospital worked at the quarry handling the dynamite? I have been doing some lite research on this and came across your site. I found some info on By searching quarry hill. There is someone who has pictures there of the caves and said the patients worked the quarry. Just wondering if this is true. Thanks

  2. I’m not sure about the patients and the dynamite. I would contact the staff at the nature center that offers periodic tours of the caves. I haven’t been on a tour, but know they do tours. They may be able to answer your question. The site is at

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