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January-February 2018

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Chips from the Quarry

INCOMPARABLE TUCSON: In 1955 a small band of Tucson Gem and Mineral Society members decided to put on a show, little dreaming that their modest event held in an elementary school, and shortly thereafter in a Quonset hut at the Tucson fairgrounds, would eventually grow to take over the entire city and create ripples around the world. Now here we are some sixty-three years later, and another generation of collectors, dealers, and curators from far-flung countries are finalizing plans for their annual pilgrimage to that powerhouse known as the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show®, also called the “Main Show” by many.

Dates for the 2018 show are 8–11 February, the Tucson Convention Center is the place, and Crystals and Crystal Forms is the theme. A fascinating subject, it is also the focus of this issue.

The META group (Mineral Enthusiasts of the Tucson Area) provided a preview of the 2018 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show® with this display titled Crystals and Crystal Forms at the 2017 show.

The META group (Mineral Enthusiasts of the Tucson Area) provided a preview of the 2018 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show® with this display titled Crystals and Crystal Forms at the 2017 show. Kenneth W. Don photo, courtesy Tucson Gem and Mineral Society

Edible Crystals and Crystal Forms. Above: John and Monica Rakovan standing beside a triple-layered “geode cake,” dessert at the 2016 Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium's banquet. Left: Crystalline cookies, dessert at the 2017 symposium's banquet.

Edible Crystals and Crystal Forms. Above: John and Monica Rakovan standing beside a triple-layered “geode cake,” dessert at the 2016 Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium's banquet. Left: Crystalline cookies, dessert at the 2017 symposium's banquet.

FOR YOUR TUCSON CALENDAR: In addition to the almost fifty satellite shows going on before and/or during the Main Show, there are numerous special events to entice the visitor. One of the first is the annual Mineral Madness Showcase and Sale held at Tucson's Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, on Kinney Road, 13–14 January. The museum's marketplace will be offering specimens starting as low as $1. Free jewelry-making demonstrations will run each day, and fun family-friendly activity stations, located throughout the museum grounds, include a Mineral Matching Game, Crystal Origami, and Ride through the Rock Cycle. At each station children can collect a free rock or mineral specimen in their own egg-carton collection box.

Then, on Saturday, 4 February, David Waisman's Fine Mineral Show at the Westwood Look Resort, on Ina Road, presents its annual Collector's Day in the resort's lobby, this year featuring the collection of Tucson's Peter Megaw. The following evening, 5 February, is the show's Sunday social (beginning at 6:30) and program (beginning at 7:30) in the Sonoran Ballroom featuring Ian Bruce, of Crystal Classics (Sommerset, England), speaking on the topic “On the Road to Adventure and Treasure.” The talk focuses on specimen mining on two continents. Another of the evening's highlights is the presentation of the American Mineral Heritage Award, established by the Mineralogical Record.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION: Rocks & Minerals will be set up with a booth or table at three locations: the Arizona Mineral and Fossil Show in the Hotel Tucson City Center 27 January–6 February; the Sunday evening program at the Westward Look Show, 5 February; and the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show® at the Convention Center, 8–11 February.

MINERAL ART: This issue has another in Susan Robinson's artist/artwork series of articles, this one titled “What's In A Cube?” in keeping with the Crystals and Crystal Forms theme. An artist herself, she had an exhibition of sixteen of her paintings at the Potsdam Town Hall, in Potsdam, New York, for five-plus weeks this past fall. Stones I Have Known was the title of the exhibition, which was sponsored by the St. Lawrence County Arts Council in Potsdam.

WHO'S WHO IN MINERAL NAMES at the Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium: Of the many people who have had minerals named after them, eleven were gathered at the Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium, held 25–27 August of this past year. You'll see them pictured here. (Although the Huizings were at the symposium, they missed the photo op, and Gene Meieran gamely photoshopped them in.)

A gathering of people at the 2017 Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium who have had minerals named after them. Back row, from left: James Zigras (zigrasite), George Rossman (rossmannite, Gene Meieran (meieranite), Bob Hazen (hazenite), Bob Downs (bobdownsite), Bob Jones (bobjonesite), Rob Lavinsky (lavinskyite), Marshall Sussman (marshallsussmanite), and Carl Francis (carlfrancisite). Front row: Terry and Marie Huizing (huizingite).

A gathering of people at the 2017 Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium who have had minerals named after them. Back row, from left: James Zigras (zigrasite), George Rossman (rossmannite, Gene Meieran (meieranite), Bob Hazen (hazenite), Bob Downs (bobdownsite), Bob Jones (bobjonesite), Rob Lavinsky (lavinskyite), Marshall Sussman (marshallsussmanite), and Carl Francis (carlfrancisite). Front row: Terry and Marie Huizing (huizingite).

We ran a similar group photo back in the January/February 1980 issue (page 18) picturing those in attendance at the 1979 Rochester Mineralogical Symposium. There were fourteen in that photo. Those featured were Dick Bideaux (bideauxite), Paul Desautels (desautelsite), Joe Mandarino (mandarinoite), Lou Perloff (perloffite), John B. Jago Trelawney (jagoite), Bob Whitmore (whitmoreite), Bob Gait (gaitite), Dick Gaines (gainesite), John White (whiteite), Bill Pinch (pinchite), Charles Locke Key (keyite and ludlockite), Hatfield Goudey (goudeyite), Paul Moore (paulmooreite), Peter Embrey (embreyite), and Prosper Williams (prosperite). (Although Prosper Williams also attended the symposium, he missed the photo session, and Terry Huizing took a separate photo of him that was included.)

JOHN POJETA: We regret to report that Dr. John Pojeta, paleontology editor of Rocks & Minerals, passed away on 6 July 2017 in Rockville, Maryland. He and his wife, Mary Lou, were pictured in this column in the November/December 2013 issue when they were honored by the Paleontology Society by having an award established and named after them: the Pojeta Award (paleosoc.org/grants-and-awards/pojeta-award). The Pojetas were also selected as the award's first recipients. Details of John's rich and distinguished career were given in that write-up.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: Thanks are extended to the authors, reviewers, and photographers in this special Crystals and Crystal Forms issue. Laura Delano of LLD Productions, Inc. underwrote color costs associated with the Word to the Wise column. The Houston Gem and Mineral Society, in memory of Arthur E. Smith, and the Cincinnati Mineral Society did the same for the Connoisseur's Choice column. Donors to the Color Fund and to the benefit auction held this past August at the Dallas Mineral Collecting Symposium contributed toward color in the remaining articles and also toward the additional pages of editorial content in this issue. All are thanked for partnering with Rocks & Minerals to enhance the publication with color photography and extra pages.

M.E.H.

 

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