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March-April 2018

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Fluorite of the Findlay Arch Mineral District: Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana

“HOW MANY TIMES HAVE WE BEEN DOWN THIS ROAD?”—a common question deliberated between my father and me in the wee hours of the morning, at least in part to remain awake, as we pass familiar landmarks on our journey to one of the numerous aggregate quarries that freckle the glacially scraped landscape of northwest Ohio. No bird has yet considered a whistle and the pavement is lonely, entertained by a meager contingent of dedicated farmers and the weary trucker on his way home from his last haul for the week. In what can be described as “almost” Saturday morning, for us and a handful of other like-minded and dedicated collectors en route to similar localities, in the softened shadows before daybreak traveling down hypnotic back roads lined by cornfields and cattle farms, it will soon be another “rock hunting” day. Excitement builds in anticipation of the potential dream find as my mind constructs its own version of the scenario soon to play out, although like the farmer, a small part of me would be equally satisfied to have remained nested in a warm bed. Be that as it may, the gracious quarry management had agreed to allow us to enter the pit and hunt for “worthless sparkly baubles” (as one quarry superintendent called them) on this particular Saturday morning while his skeleton crew conducts some equipment maintenance.

 

Joseph W. Vasichko follows in the footsteps of his father, John, who started collecting minerals in the 1960s at quarries in and around Ohio. Cumulatively, they have visited more than fifty localities within the Findlay Arch mineral district alone.

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