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September-October 2010

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Colorado Mineral Treasures from The Field Museum, Chicago, Illinois

The Field Museum was established in Chicago at the end of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition to preserve many of the artifacts that were displayed there. Since its founding, the museum has grown into one of the major natural history museums in the world. Although its mineral, gem, and economic geology (ore) collections date from the very beginning of the museum, they are largely unknown to most mineral collectors and scientific researchers. The economic geology collections contain many interesting and historically significant ore specimens from mines that operated before the turn of the twentieth century. To illustrate the tremendous scientific and historic value of the mineral, gem and ore collections at The Field Museum, this article highlights some of the more interesting Colorado specimens there, along with historical background about each.

Karen and Mark Vendl are geologists who collect Colorado minerals and study Colorado mining history. Located in the Chicago area, they have developed an interest in the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition and The Field Museum.

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