Back in 2009 the late Paul Lowe was disposing of the mineral collection of the late Dr Fred Armitage.
Dr Armitage lectured in Chemistry at London Universities from the 1970s until the early 2000s. He had a huge interest in puzzles particularly polycube assemblies, which combined with chemistry was a good basis for an interest in minerals.
In this collection was a rhodochrosite specimen labelled from Wessels Mine, South Africa. The mineral was formed on a substrate of brittle, resinous concoidal material which at the time was uncertain to me.
As ever minerals change hands and this piece found its way into to the collection of Dr Bill Logan, in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA.
Bill is renowned especially in the USA as collector of rhodochrosite from any locality; to this end Bill has amassed a very fine collection in a variety of habits, and is currently the author of the only book ever dedicated to rhodochrosite.
Bringing the story up to date, Bill has been letting some of his specimens go, and I recognised this one online from its time spent with us.
I was really pleased to see that the strange resinous matrix has been identified as neotocite.
Neotocite is an amorphous non crystallised mineral comprising hydrated silicate of manganese, iron and magnesium. It has been named after the Greek meaning of recent origin, it is an alteration product.
Another puzzle solved.
Below is a link to Dr Bill Logan's book.