Fluorite - zoned with phantoms
Larkins Quarry, Connemara, Galway County
4.4 x 4.1 x 2.5 CM (miniature)
Post Tucson 2022
The Larkin Quarry of Galway county in Ireland has been occasionally producing some fine Fluorites over the past 3 years or so. Some like this piece have good zoning, phantoms and glassy faces. This piece is well above average for the size, has vivid color in person and is a choice example of the find. In fine condition on the display side, the back side is contacted but not visible from the front.
An unusually fine, complete and rather well-formed sixling crystal of Russian Alexandrite (Chrysoberyl). The Chromian green color is quite evident under daylight. This is classic in its form and locality, ex Eric Asselborne collection. In person this has excellent color change and with a strong light is translucent. An LED flashlight behind this shows a bright red core with a green exterior rind. Without such lighting the color is dark green and looks opaque. Most of the thin edges of this piece are sharp and well-defined though some are rough, this is far better than most specimens that have many larger edge chips or incomplete faces. A choice, classic thumbnail.
A colorful and large thumbnail of this uncommon variety of Mottramite with both Ca and Bi. This is a variety of Mottramite and not an confirmed separate specie, but was at one time. The association of Shattuckite adds a nice color contrast. This is a relatively rich specimen of a variety usually only in micromounts. The Duhamelite can be spotted by naked eye easily but is certainly best appreciated under magnification.
A small but brilliant red thumbnail of gemmy Rhodochrosite from the N'Chwaning Mine (South Africa). This cluster of crystals has several perfect, complete terminations but there is some cleaving as well seen from one side. Despite many efforts to find more of this quality at the mines, nothing like these has been recovered for many years. These are highly sought after and larger examples are often priced in the mid 4 to 5 figures. This is a small but bright piece at a reasonable cost.
Well-crystalized and with vivid color, a bright small miniature from the new finds at Palabanda in Mfouati which have been big mineral news. While the individual crystals from this find are not so large as the famed classic find at the Black Pine Mine, the density and overall flash of good pieces like this are highly desirable. This piece shows especially well-defined sharp crystals in a dense cluster that were protected in a vug. Better than the typical material from this important find and an attractive specimen from anyplace, there has not been any new production that we are aware of over the past year or so.
Veszelyite - US classic locale
Black Pine Mine, Flint Creek Valley, John Long Mts., Granite Co.
2.9 x 2.2 x 1.7 CM (thumbnail)
Post Tucson 2022
Two main crystals of Veszelyite on contrasting matrix from the famous find over 30 years ago. There have not been any found since. These crystals have somewhat complex rounded look from some angles and reach 7mm. Veszelyite is a rare mineral in general and in crystals visible to the naked eye is only known from a few localities in the world. The Black Pine Mine was for a long time the premier locality and despite recent finds elsewhere is still considered to be the source of the best specimens worldwide.
A sharp cluster of pure Heklaite with ice-clear crystals from the one time find at the Polk County Mine (Florida, USA). Heklaite is a Sodium, Potassium Fluoride specie that was discovered and described as a new mineral in 2008 . Known only as small grains in vents on the Hekla Volcano in Iceland the discovery of these huge crystals in Florida was big news. Waste areas at this Phosphate mine had ponded water that allowed these crystals to grow. Although these do form from natural materials by a happy accident, those materials are contacted during the mining operations so we do not consider them fully natural. These crystals would not exist without the intervention of humans. This find produced a small number of very fine specimens like this with sizable textbook perfect crystals of this rare mineral. Due to the human involvement in the formation we consider this an oddity and not really fully natural. Despite this these are impressive and rare specimens of a specie that in nature is never impressive .
Gem clear Garnets with glassy faces with vivid color and deep striations. The individual crystals are up to 1.3 CM across and contrast with the matrix. In excellent condition as seen, this is from the famed Jeffrey Mine, a modern classic locality that was at one time the source of the world's very best Grossular. Since the mine has been closed these have become much more prized, this miniature piece has a strong display impact that stands out.