you pay for Pipestone: How is the price decided upon?
always get a lot of people complaining about the selling of
pipestone. They say that the Native people are selling the
blood of their ancestors. We respectfully beg to differ on
that one, what they are actually selling is their own blood
and sweat. You don't buy the actual stone just the person's
time to quarry it for you. We decided to look into this further
and do some figurative research. This page is the result of
you will see a breakdown of one man's expenses as he quarries.
He is a man that doesn't actually exist but we have taken
an across the board representation from the quarriers that
we know. All of them have these expenses, some more, some
less, and we have tried to cover all expenses in an average
way, rather than taking the highest figures we were given.
of the quarriers will take longer to get their stone, some
a shorter time, again we have taken an average time period.
hope that you will find these figures interesting. They were
for us, and we were surprised at the results.
for two (2) months quarrying for one person living in Pipestone
with own accommodation
on house: 70
on car: 300
on car: 75
for fuel: 65
for car: 60
*doctor bill: 100
Tools/equipment replaced every year: 100
$2,690 ($1,345 per month) (2002 prices)
doctors bills are for the older quarriers who inevitably pull
their back out or get another injury during quarrying.
total stone removed each year which is usable is about 300
the amount of stone taken out is divided into the amount of
expenses to get to the stone the price
per pound should be just under $9.00 (8.96666) to compensate
the quarrier for just his time.
As it stands now the Pipestone quarriers
charge between $9 and $10 a pound for the stone.
For known Native people the stone is cheaper and often free.
Leaving the quarrier running at a loss.
someone coming to Pipestone from elsewhere the costs would
be much higher as they would have motel/camping fees and their
living costs here and at their home to contend with.
in the old days! They probably didn't have many costs
and with so many of them working together it would have
been quicker to get the stone out. They left with wagon loads of Catlinite to make pipes and trinkets from. (Pipestone County Star article)
These are the same people who have been telling us for years that it is wrong to sell the Pipe and make trinkets. The ones who started the Pipestone Issue back in the 80's.
- Chuck's parents quarrying while some tourists
- Chuck in the quarry