Kevin Gardner, Granite Kiss, Stone Wall Traditions and Techniques

A tip from Nadine Obermiller :

Kevin Gardner is a writer, teacher, tradesman, and a lifelong resident of Hopkinton, NH.


For more than thirty years he has been a stone wall builder in a family business widely known for traditional New England stonework, particularly for historic restoration of antique structures. In 2001, Kevin published The Granite Kiss: Traditions and Techniques of Building New England Stone Walls.

In addition to The Granite Kiss, he has published poetry, songs, and essays, including “Radical Resilience: American Families from 1850-2001” (with Brenda Foley), which appeared in the anthology No Higher Calling, published by NH Child and Family Services, and “Land of Stone”, an examination of several historic sites in the Monadnock Region, in the 2006 anthology Where The Mountain Stands Alone, a collection published by University Press of New England and the Monadnock Institute of Nature, Place, and Culture. He is currently at work on a second book, Barns Beyond Hope, a series of stories and essays about surviving remnants of New England’s agricultural landscape.

Profiles and other information about Kevin have appeared in the books Sermons in Stone, by Susan Allport, The Bones of the Earth, by Howard Mansfield, and Good Fences: A Pictorial History of New England’s Stone Walls, by William Hubbell. He has been featured on WMUR’s television magazine Chronicle, in New Hampshire Profiles magazine, and in many local newspapers and other publications.

Since 1985, Kevin has also been a performance critic, feature writer, and producer for NH Public Radio. His pieces on arts, history and culture have been aired on National Public Radio and the Christian Science Monitor broadcast network, and he is a two-time winner of the NH Association of Broadcaster’s Golden Mic Award for feature writing. In 2004, Kevin was a co-host (with Laura Knoy) of the nationally syndicated radio series Storylines New England, an interview and call-in program about our regional literature. He’s been a Guest Host of Ms. Knoy’s morning call-in show, The Exchange, and has written and produced other special programming for NHPR.

Kevin is also a longtime professional actor, director, and teacher of theatre. He has taught at the New  HamptonSchool, the NH Institute of Art, and at St. Paul’s School. Since 1999 he has been the Master Teacher of the course Shakespeare for Performance in the St. Paul’s Advanced Studies Program. He is also a regular Guest Director at Plymouth  State University, a performance evaluator for the NH State Council on the Arts, and a frequent adjudicator of local, regional, and national theatre festivals.  New Hampshire Magazine named him the state’s Best Theatre Critic in 2008.

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