Rutile - classic US locale
Graves Mt., Lincoln Co.
3.2 x 2.3 x 1.7 CM (small miniature/ large thumbnail (toenail))
Early summer 2021
Super sharp, highly lustrous and doubly terminated crystal from Graves Mountain. The front and sides of this piece are in excellent condition, perfect with no dings or chipping. The backside is contacted and has some adhering matrix which is not seen on display. The dark color (black to ultra dark red) is set off by a very bright metallic luster. This locality still gives up some fine crystals to dedicated collectors but much less than in the golden years of the late 1800's. This form and habit are really unlike other Rutile from anyplace else on earth.
A big, blocky habit Rutile crystal on minimal matrix from the famed Graves Mountain locality in Georgia. Very sharp for this large size with mottled, yet still, lustrous faces and well-defined form. Most larger crystals tend to be more crude or have rounded edges, by comparison this is quite developed. The backside is partly embedded in the matrix and is contacted but the front, sides and termination are well-formed and in very good condition overall. Graves Mountain has a long and colorful history of providing Rutile crystals, it is a classic source. This is an older specimen with a quality not found often, what looks at first to be a black crystal is in strong light a red-brown color with some red highlights at some angles.
A pair of sharp, complete Staurolite crystals that were added to the Levison Collection in 1898. These are labeled as from from Mine Hill, Georgia. This not a known locale but these do look much like some of the more recent Fannin County materials. One is twinned and the other is a single crystal, sharp textbook form. A photocopy of the Levison Ledger page is included as is his printed and handwritten label with the date.
A historic specimen of Lazulite crystals well-exposed on a small matrix. The second photo includes the original label from Charles U. Sheppard Jr which indicates this was from a brief period of mining at this site specifically for mineral specimens. Sheppard's father was one of the great early USA mineralogists, he studied this deposit and published in 1856. His son (Jr.) later was a part owner and mined this locality for the international specimen trade and exchange with institutions. Sheppard Jr died in 1915, though the specimen is likely over 150 years old. This Lazulite thumbnail has several crude crystals on it the largest and best is 1.6 CM tall and covers much of the front or display side. This locality produced a very few exceptional world class Lazulite; this one is not that exceptional but is certainly above average and has the rare original label that dates back to one of the first specimen mining operations in the USA. An affordable and nice classic.
A superb vintage specimen. A jewel-like Rutile crystal (twinned) is set in a cluster of Kyanite blades that are coated with reddish Hematite and a bit of Goethite. This comes with an F. Pisani label, the famed Paris mineral dealer, vintage 1870's but possibly much older. The rutile is brilliantly lustrous and perfect on all sides. The remarkable Rutile of Graves Mountain was highly desired by European collectors of the late 1800's who had the means to purchase the very best specimens. It is hard to appreciate the brilliant luster of this Rutile in photos, this is far beyond any typical specimen from here.
A sharp and distinct pair of Rutile crystals are penetration twinned on matrix. An older Graves Mt. specimen, the red color and satin luster are very fine for the locale. Textbook forms and a nice display specimen, the front side seen on display is perfectly damage free but the underside and one edge (out of sight) have contacts. Choice.
Barite (Barytes) - dark blue
Paga mine, Cartersville District, Bartow County
4.8 x 3.1 x 2.2 CM (miniature)
Late Summer 2018
A deep blue chisel-tip Barite from the now classic Georgia (USA) locale at Cartersville. The deep "royal blue" color was the most desirable but very uncommon at this locale. This is a choice miniature example in fine condition, with good transparency, luster and very sharp terminations. Not often available anymore, a good Georgia Blue is a welcome addition for any suite of Barite and especially for a Southeastern USA collection.
Graves Mt., Lincoln Co.
4.3 x 3.2 x 2.6 CM (miniature)
Late Summer 2018
This is the termination section of a complex Rutile crystal that shows twinning. From the famed Graves Mountain locale, which is among the few localities worldwide that produced such large, blocky habit Rutile. Textbook form, undamaged and quite sharp for one of these, the color is a very dark red brown. No damage on any of the display sides, cleaved on the base (bottom) only.