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September-October 2015

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Chips from the Quarry

SECOND MARRIAGE: The July/August issue featured an article on growing quartz crystals titled “A Marriage of Science and Art” by Janet Clifford and Vlad Klipov (pages 379–384). A marriage of a different sort, one involving the merging of two mineral collections, is described in this issue. Beginning on page 450, Theodore Bornhorst and Christopher Poulsen tell how two Michigan universities have joined hands to preserve the legacy of a historic mineral collection as the University of Michigan's collection settles into its new home at Michigan Technological University.

GSA CELEBRATES GOLDEN ANNIVERSARY: The Northeast Section of the Geological Society of America (GSA) celebrated its fiftieth anniversary meeting on 23–25 March of this year with a group of special mineral displays. The Capital Mineral Club (of Concord, New Hampshire), Harvard University's Mineralogical and Geological Museum, the Maine Mineral and Gem Museum, and the Micromounters of New England filled a room with cases of remarkable minerals and gems from the Northeastern states and Canadian provinces included in the Northeast Section. Some twelve hundred geologists attended the meeting at the historic Mount Washington Resort in New Hampshire's White Mountains.

At the fiftieth anniversary meeting of the GSA in New Hampshire, Tom Mortimer, of the New England Micromounters, displayed examples of nearly all the minerals found in the state. Selecting a particular mineral from the interactive touch-screen menu brings up a photo with information, and a light indicates the actual specimen in the case at the left.

SUSAN ROBINSON CELEBRATES CENTENNIAL: The article on Illinois artist Jim Hutsler in the May/June issue (pages 270–272) marked number one hundred in Susan Robinson's art series in Rocks & Minerals. For the past twenty-eight years she has sought out and showcased the work of those specializing in mineral, fossil, and mining artwork, worldwide, whether it be paintings, pen-and-inks, sculptures, or carvings. Her continuing contributions add a welcome dimension to our pages, and we thank her for them.

At the fiftieth anniversary meeting of the GSA in New Hampshire, Tom Mortimer, of the New England Micromounters, displayed examples of nearly all the minerals found in the state. Selecting a particular mineral from the interactive touch-screen menu brings up a photo with information, and a light indicates the actual specimen in the case at the left.Susan Robinson, one hundred articles since 1987 and still counting.

Robinson's first article, “Mineral Art Today,” which appeared in the September/October 1987 issue, began with a history of mineral illustration, pictured no less than nineteen artists with brief biographies and examples of their artwork, and filled seventeen pages, four of which were in color (a rarity back then and financed by the late Randolph S. Rothchild and the Rochester Mineralogical Symposium).

In this issue she focuses on Charles B. Crow's intricate mining woodcarvings, two of which can be seen at the Colorado School of Mines Geology Museum in Golden at their now-annual open house, this year being held the evening of 16 September, just before the Denver Show opens.

EARTH SCIENCE WEEK: The numbers are in, and they are impressive. As a result of last year's Earth Science Week at least 50 million people gained a new awareness of the geosciences, and it was thus declared a global success.

Two thousand fifteen marks the seventeenth year for this international annual event, which is organized by the American Geosciences Institute, a nonprofit federation of geoscientific professional associations. The week was established to give students and others new opportunities to discover the earth sciences and to encourage stewardship on our planet.

Earth Science Week 2015 will be observed 11–17 October; its theme is Visualizing Earth Systems. For the latest information on the many related activities, especially for teachers and schoolchildren, visit www.earthsciweek.org.

DECEASED: John R. Muntyan, of Louisville and Estes Park, Colorado, passed away at the age of seventy-three at the end of April of this year. A physicist by training, he was better known to the mineral community as a photographer, with many of his mineral photos illustrating articles published in the 1970s through the early 2000s. He also had a keen interest in scientific instruments, and in the 1970s he was a founding member of the Colorado Chapter of Friends of Mineralogy.

John R. Muntyan (1941–2015)

2015 MUNICH SHOW: Look for lots of glitz, shimmer, and dazzle at this year's Munich Show (Mineralientage München), 30 October through 1 November, with its theme of Gem Minerals carried out in show exhibits and the show catalogue. As always, you can also look for the Rocks & Minerals booth there, thanks to space provided by Christoph Keilmann, show chairman.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: The Houston Gem and Mineral Society, in memory of Arthur E. Smith, and the Cincinnati Mineral Society underwrote color costs in the Connoisseur's Choice column; Maryanne and John Fender (Fender Minerals) did the same for the Museum Notes column. Donors to the Color Fund, including the benefit auction at the Dallas Mineral Symposium, contributed toward color in the remaining columns and articles. All are thanked for partnering with Rocks & Minerals to support color photography in the magazine.       

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