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January-February 2016

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U.S. State Gemstones That Are Blue

Blue minerals are the theme of the 2016 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show.® Brightly colored minerals are always popular for both their beauty and their distinctiveness. Ten states in the United States have passed laws designating a blue mineral as their official state gemstone. Each of the states has its own story as to how and why it chose a blue mineral. A group of citizens may have petitioned their state legislature to vote for a particular symbol, or perhaps legislators themselves may have submitted a symbol to promote outstanding aspects of their county or state. Approval is usually not difficult because these symbols are generally noncontroversial and nonpartisan and require no expenditures. Many if not all of these gem minerals will be on display at the 2016 show in Tucson.

Mark Ivan Jacobson, a consulting editor of Rocks & Minerals, specializes in pegmatites and their histories of exploitation.       

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