In fall 2010, granite boulders were installed throughout the City of Letters and engraved with words of inspiration. These new Literary Landmarks will permanently endow Salinas with symbols of its literary history and culture.
The boulders are made from stone quarried in the Aromas area by Graniterock. The quarry stone truly dictates the shape and look of the boulders and dates from more than two hundred million years ago. That’s when a mass of molten granite began to push up through the earth. The granite cooled, contracted and cracked, and was folded, broken, crushed and uplifted. The granite is located directly on the San Andreas Fault. The quarry began at the end of the 19th century with the discovery of a deposit of high quality granite along the Pajaro River east of Watsonville, near Aromas.
In 1918, Graniterock began to build a road between Moss Landing and Castroville. Also known as “Cauliflower Boulevard,” it was the place a sixteen year old boy named John Steinbeck worked as an employee of the Graniterock road gang. He made $2.75 a day working as an oiler on a dredge that drained sloughs in preparation for road building. Graniterock manager Bob Cozzens remembered young Steinbeck sleeping roadside with the crew, and taking meals for 35¢ each at the Little Bennet Hotel in Castroville.
Click here for a downloadable list of all the Public Art Locations