John Gilmer, a Surry County farmer, bought the land that North Carolina Granite now quarries back in 1872. At that time the exposed rock was considered \"good for nothing.\" ÂThe quarrying company was known as Thomas Woodruff & Sons until 1904, when N.C. Granite was organized. N.C. Granite is the largest granite quarrying firm in the state, and the 90-acre quarry is the world's largest open quarry.