Story: Rock, limestone and clay

Lime kiln

Lime kiln

This kiln at Sandymount on the Otago Peninsula was built in 1865 by a Scotsman named McDonald. During the 19th century lime was burnt in small kilns such as this, near the limestone deposits. Limestone, which is mainly calcium carbonate (CaCO3), was burnt to drive off carbon dioxide (CO2), leaving calcium oxide (CaO) – otherwise known as burnt lime. Crushed limestone was used to improve pastures, and burnt lime was used to make a rather inferior mortar.

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How to cite this page:

Carl Walrond, 'Rock, limestone and clay - Limestone', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/5227/lime-kiln (accessed 2 April 2020)

Story by Carl Walrond, published 12 Jun 2006