Old Appleton Quarry

Aerial Old Appleton Quarry 04-17-2011You don’t realize how many quarries there are in Southeast Missouri until you fly over the area in a small plane. When Ernie Chiles and I went on a photo mission that took us up to Perry County in 2011, we passed over Old Appleton on the way home.

There is one HUGE pit on the west side of Hwy 61 at the intersection of  State Hway KK just south of Old Appleton. The brown water in the foreground is Apple Creek.

I couldn’t find much information on the quarry. There are still piles of gravel around, so it may still be active.

When I searched for quarries and Old Appleton, the only thing that popped up was a vague reference to Martin Marietta Aggregates, 224 State Hwy KK. A website not affiliated with the company (so far as I could tell) said that it has an estimated annual revenue of $2.5 to $5 million and employees 10 to 19 people.

Quarry photo gallery

Here some views of the quarry from other angles. Click on any photo to make it larger, then use your arrow keys to move through the gallery.

27 Replies to “Old Appleton Quarry”

  1. That quarry was purchased by Martin Marietta and has been shutdown. As a person would come out the upper entrance there is a very small cemetery there. At least there were markers. I have not been on KK for a while. I heard it was an African American cemetery. Don’t know for sure. I’ll check it out and see if it is still there.

  2. That quarry is the closest one I have ever seen to an active body of water; especially considering it is lower than Apple Creek. Ground water seepage would be a constant aggravation.

  3. The cemetery is an African American cemetery. Also just up Apple Creek is the house built into the side of the hill. Its 3 floors.

    1. I just came across this post, sorry for the delay in replying. My step-grandfather, J.W. Gerhardt, built the home around 1952 that I believe you are referring to. He called it “Riviere de la Pomme”, which is French for “River of the Apples”; we fondly referred to it as “The Lodge.” It has three main floors, plus a very unique cave room on a lower level that has the actual creek bluffs for part of its interior walls. He also built an African American school house around 1910 (his first project under Gerhardt Construction Co, from what I have found), which likely was across Rt. KK from the cemetery and was relocated onto the Lodge property in the 1950’s. I think it was later relocated (1970’s?) near the historic and sadly demolished Wucher House in Old Appleton. Mary Jane Buchheit, a local historian of the Apple Creek area, is trying to find out more information about this school and of the African American community that lived in Old Appleton in the late 1800’s to early and mid 1900’s. She has helped to establish a museum about the Apple Creek area in the school building next to St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, Apple Creek.

      1. Just had to reply to your post! My parents actually bought The lodge around 1985. I loved it there! I have lots of stories about that house…I’m not sure exactly how long they owned it but I think they may have finally sold it around 1996 or 1997. Please feel free to contact me at my email address if you want to talk jennyrfolsom@gmail.com

  4. I have no ideal, I was asked the question and told the inquirer I try to dig up the story too. Thanks for responding. Theres still my friend Herb Buchheit who is very knowlegeable about this area, maybe I’ll get to ask him.

  5. I would like to take/get a great photo of the quarry. How can I get in without breaking the law? I see posts from teenagers swimming in it, so there must be a way.

  6. Hello I am a descendant of all the people in the African Methodist church plaque listed on line . Do you have any info about some of these people in a library or records in town. Thank u

  7. Hi Elvira–

    I believe Mary Jane Buchheit, the local historian at Old Appleton/Apple Creek, would be very interested in talking with you. She would like to add more information about the African American community to the museum in Apple Creek. You might learn something from her, and she might learn something from you. I can contact her if you are interested; please reply if you are, and we can exchange contact info.

    I copied and pasted this excerpt from a reply to a previous post here (reply dated July 10, 2018; the post was Oct 31, 2014 and titled “African Methodist Church Cemetery.”). You may already have this information, since this post has a picture of the plaque. I have no idea if the persons in the excerpt are still around or if the email address is current.

    Here it is:
    I noticed the note from Audrey Gillenwater, and was so glad to see that she is related to Alfred GILWATERS. He is my grandfather! We are cousins! Audrey if you see my note, and can contact me please do so. Paulette Hall. Email is paveau2002@yahoo.com

    You may be able to find some information at the Cape County Archive Center in Jackson. They are short staffed, so you may have to go and look yourself. Here is a link to their website:

    Good luck!
    Marise Compass

    1. Hello my name is Tammy Howell
      I am the cousin by marriage to Elvira Young. My mother n law and her mother were sisters. It was thirteen siblings in all born to Edward Whintener & Ida Farrer in Appleton Cape Girardeau. Sadly my mother n law passed and only two siblings are left. I will try contacting one of the two Aunts and see if she can tell me any stories! I do have a chair in my basement that m y mother n law said was her chair from when she was in school. I would love it hear from Mary Jane Buchheit’ My email address is tammymrzkuumba@yahoo.com Thank you

    2. Hi Marise,

      I would also be interested in communicating with the historian you mentioned in your post (and others). I am a descendant of several people on the plaque you referenced. You also quoted a post from my aunt :). I last visited the cemetery over 10years ago – but did not realize that huge quarry was behind it (wow!). I have some nice pictures of our visit there; and of kids diving in the creek(?)/quarry(?) nearby. Regarding the schoolhouse, I believe I have a picture of it from [circa] 1917 with my grandmother and several other school children. I can be reached at missberry_esq@yahoo.com.

    3. Hello Marise,

      I would also be interested in communicating with the historian you mentioned. I am a descendant of several people listed on the plaque. I last visited the cemetery over 10 years ago and did not realize there was a huge quarry behind it (wow!). Thanks to Mr. Steinhoff for sharing the amazing pictures & story. We also took some pretty good pictures of the area and some kids diving nearby in the creek (?), quarry (?). Marise, you actually quoted my aunt in your post above. Regarding the schoolhouse, I have some pics of my grandmother attending the school (circa 1917) and other school children. I assume its the same schoolhouse. I can be reached at missberry_esq@yahoo.com

  8. Do you happen to know who maintains the cemetery grounds? My grandson and I completed a local Master Gardener’s program about a year ago and are needing to complete some volunteer assistance in our area. We live in the country, about 10 minutes from the cemetery; we pass it when we must travel to St Louis.
    We thought that perhaps we could assist with cemetery maintenance this summer but don’t know who to contact. Can you help us with a name/contact? We don’t want to barge in where we are not needed…Thank you.

    1. I wish I could help you, but all I know about the site is included in the blog post. Give a call to the Cape Girardeau County Historical Society in Jackson at 573-979-5170. They have an excellent reference area.

      The last person who commented on this post I did on the cemetery said he knew someone who took care of the cemetery. Maybe he could help.

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