How did those rocks get there?

I realize that a genuine factual answer may not be possible for this question, but speculation and educated guesses are OK.

Here is a picture of the harbor in Rockport, MA. Notice the jetty in the lower left hand corner. The picture fails to capture the overall hugeness of it, but it is perhaps 10-15 feet high, twice as wide, and is composed of granite blocks around 3 feet cubed. The rocks are not stacked neatly, but rather in a sort of disorganised jumble. The jetty extends probably more that a hundred feet out into the water.

How did the rocks get there? It’s not like they could be dragged over existing rocks, as the surface is very uneven. It’s pretty difficult and dangerous to walk on, much less pull a sled or wagon of any kind. I can’t imagine a land crane extending that far, and I’d bet a boat crane would simply tip over.

Any ideas?

My guess: The were transported by truck on a temporary road built on top of the jetty.

Well that or by barge. There’s all kinds of cranes out there.

They must be delivering them by sea; the configuration you describe is a really common way of building harbours and sea defences - I’ve seen them in places that were totally inaccessible to land vehicles. I’m also pretty certain that the rocks aren’t being placed individually (except maybe the really big ones), but are being dumped off a barge or by a grab crane.

True enough–though not as haphazardly built, there is a similar sea wall about half a mile out. I don’t imagine a truck driving out to sea to deliver rocks.

For the jetty in Rockport, MA, they built a dirt road on top and trucked in the large rocks. Placement was made by a crane. Here is a pic of similar construction.
For off-shore or inaccessible locations, the rocks are brought in by barge and a floating crane is used.

And although no one actually asked, Rockport is known as the site of at least four major granite quarries and used to supply granite for much of the East Coast. So if anyone had the technology and know-how to manhandle huge chunks of stone, the locals did. If anyone is ever in the neighborhood, Halibut Point is an old quarry turned into a state park and is a fun place to scramble around on a summer’s afternoon.

It’s positively surreal. Like an alien landscape. In some places, there is not a living thing to be seen.

Ever been to the paper house?

Yep. And to keep this in the spirit of informative GQ, let me briefly describe it. The Paper House was owned by a guy who had, apparently, just a whole lot of time on his hand, and an obsession for using paper as a construction material. So the entire furnishings of this little cottage in Rockport are composed of rolled up and lacquered newspapers. Glancing at my pictures, this includes tables, chairs, a grandfather clock, a mantel and a piano. I think the clock may have newspapers from every state, but it’s been a while so I’m not sure of that.

I’d post some pictures but I’m not sure about copyrights and permissions.

While I don’t know as I’d drive a whole lot of distance to see it, if you’re passing through Rockport, MA, it’s worth a stop, if only to look obsession right in the eye.