A juxtaposed pair of "butterfly" twin Calcites with bright faces, fine clarity and red Hematite phantoms. From the last mining at Leiping, these are excellent examples from this locality. These twins made big news in the mineral world when found in 2002, partly because they looked so much like the classic British twins from over a century ago. Sharp. clean and elegant these are modern classics that look like the vintage old world classics.
A rare, choice gem clear thumbnail of lilac color Hexagonite (var of Tremolite). The termination on this is complex being made of many tiny points in a tapering structure. Transparent with some color zoning seen when backlit. I believe that St. Lawrence County is the only place where this mineral occurs being found at just 4 locations. However only the Gouverneur Mine ever produced any of this sort of clear terminated crystal and not many of them. This was named when it was thought the crystal form was Hexagonal, however it was later determined to be Monoclinic. The crystal here is in fine condition, has clear striations along the prism faces and a very rich color.
From the "golden age" of mineral finds at Yaogangxian, this is a super choice Stannite. Ex Shields Flynn collection, the Stannites are bright brassy, well formed, undamaged and very rich. This specimen was exhibited at Tucson in the TGMS displays in 2005 celebrating the minerals of China. Most pieces from this find had much more Arsenopyrite and or Sphalerite than Stannite, this is almost all Stannite with clear Quartz crystals adding a nice accent. Most will agree that the old Yaogangxian finds were the best ever found. This specimen is well better than typical and now Chinese Stannite is rarely available in such size and attractive quality.
Elbaite -Rubellite gem crystal
Cruzeiro Mine, Sao Jose de Safira
3.5 x 1 x .7 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
100 percent gem grade Rubellite, mostly a fine cranberry red color with a lightly yellow zoning at the termination. An older Cruzeiro (Brazil) crystal the color is unusually intense for this locality, this looks similar to some Santa Rosa and Jonas mine crystals yet has a sightly different hue. In excellent condition as seen, with even a little backlighting this glows like red glass. The inside is very clean, this is all facet grade that has avoided the cutting wheel. Choice and better in person. Ex John Buckley collection we think this is a 1970 era piece.
Elbaite -gem Tourmaline
Usakos, Karibib District
2.7 x .9 x .9 CM (thumbnail)
A single, doubly terminated and gemmy clear Elbaite crystal from the Karibib. Namibian gem Tourmaline of any quality has become quite uncommon, it was last being found almost 20 years ago. Complete and in nice condition this one shows the striated faces and flat terminations that is typical of these Karibib crystals. Nearly all facet grade, the interior is transparent and clear deep green.
Smithsonite -very fine Moroccan
Touissit, Touissit-Bou Beker Dist., Jerada Province
10.6 x 7.3 x 4.1 CM (cabinet)
Large cabinet specimen of well crystallized and very lustrous Smithsonite from the Touissit Mine (Morrocco). The crystals are transparent and when magnified many show color zoning and phantom of a reddish core. Botryoidal and "finger" growths are fully covered by sharp, bright crystals. The color is a light green-blue hue and contrasts nicely with the reddish matrix. In fine condition, Smithsonite from this locale have never been very common (the mine has been closed for decades) and now top pieces are quite rare. This is a sizable display specimen with excellent impact, a fine addition to any serious Smithsonite suite or Moroccan collection.
Sphalerite -classic USA
Joplin Field, Tri State District, Jasper County
11.3 x 9 x 4.8 CM (cabinet)
Large, esthetic and in perfect condition, this is an exemplary old Tri-state Sphalerite, mined before 1940. The Joplin field was at one time a seemingly endless source of mineral specimens, though really fine, undamaged pieces were very rare. The last of these mines have all been closed for more than 50 years, and the best specimens came out long before then. This is a superb Sphalerite with large distinct crystals that stand out from the matrix. Crystal faces show complex striations, etchings and some twinning, these have a choice silky luster that shows these structures well. This is incredible in person and very much a superb piece from this now legendary area.
Bustamite on Calcite
Broken Hill, Yancowinna County
New South Wales,
3.4 x 2.3 x 2.2 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
A nice old Broken Hill specimen with a complete Bustamite crystal nicely perched on matrix. Previously labeled as Rhodonite this was a common mistake seen on early labels. This crystal is partly color zoned, has some translucence and has the classic slightly rounded edges. The Bustamite is doubly terminated and the matrix of Calcite is strongly fluorescent.