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  • Blog entry
    Topical with some work we have been doing on locality database this newslink has been circulating the web mineral chat areas recently. The content of the article is about the intention to re-open Tsumeb again for specimen (crystal) mining and as an...
  • Blog entry
    This week we are planning to make some upgrades to e-Rocks. Everything will be going on behind the scenes. There maybe a few occasions you will find a page to slow to load or will need a "refresh" for this to complete as the new software synchronises...
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    Post Munich and another 3 new minerals are photographed and listed into our database. This latest group are all offered by Italian specialist Marzio Mamberti of New Brand Minerals and with excellent background information. Here are the three minerals,...
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    The Mineralogical Record have recently published their latest periodical online article "What is new on the Mineral World?". These articles, written by Tom Moore look around and review internet dealers website and feature minerals currently on view. This...
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    As Facebook does, this fantastic specimen photo posted by Val Collins in May 2012 appeared in my timeline today. Not many of these specimens of cerussite with pyromorphite from Daoping Mine appeared, this must be one of the best examples. Thanks to...
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    George & I took a morning out from website work to visit the third, Oxford show for 2015. The Oxford shows are run by Paul Lowe and have for the last years provided regular a venue for sellers and collectors in the UK. A small venue and a small show...
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    Having recently changed over from bridge photography to DSLR and discovered the joys of stacking and rotational presentations, photography here has changed a lot in the last few months. Previously seeing other people's macro photos has always left me...
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    In the last month we have enlisted the support of 2 new dealers, both husband and wife teams based in South Africa. First we have Pierre and Riana Joubert of Namibian Brandberg Crystals and second we have Francois and Lorriane Retief of South Sky...
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    Currently on offer in Sal's Mineral auction - see Item Reference link below. This gold nugget is from Bendigo, Victoria, Australia and weighs in at 59gr with dimensions 3.5 × 2.5 × 2 cm. In terms of size and weight of gold this is one the biggest gold...
  • Blog entry
    Calamaite is the third natural Ti dominant sulfate mineral known yet. Russian scientists recognized this phase, occuring as filigrane colourless sprays, while doing some analytical investigations in a matrix of coquimbite / römerite. Type locality is...
  • Blog entry
    Carsten Slotta, of Mineral Treasure has this specimen of fluorite currently listed on e-Rocks. From the lesser known Black Forest locality of Igelschlatt Mine, Waldshut the piece is covered in amazingly perfect hexakis-octahedral crystals. (It should be...
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    Introduction:  A few months ago I came across the mineral aldridegeite in the IMA list of minerals whilst doing some research. This sulphate mineral is a member of the develline group first discovered and only found at Broken Hill, New South Wales,...
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    Fake mineral (and fossil) specimens have been around as long as there have been collectors and widely regarded as a big "no-no" for most people, and rightly so. Some fakes are obvious; I remember well back in 2003 at Ste Marie the open air Romanian guys...
  • Blog entry
    This old time specimen from Baia Sprie, Romania is quite rare and unusual. It comprises myriad sheaves of clear baryte arranged in fern-like stacks. Within the body of the individual crystals there are vivid red inclusions of realgar, and forming a...
  • Blog entry
    George and I are back from our Christmas road trip into Germany via Belgium and France. What we didn't pick up in minerals we certainly made up for with adventure and festive fun. Normal service with email replies etc will return from today, after a bit...
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    It is already nearly a few months since we returned from our eventful trip to Alicante with the Uerpmann collection; when we returned we parked a large portion of the unseen collection in our warehouse. All this material had been wrapped and taped in...
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    When starting offering analytical service I got in contact with some passionate mineral collectors. This allowed me too examine some minerals, I did not hold in my hands before. As you can see in my current auction, I can offer paxite, mgriite and...
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    Having worked with Madagascan minerals over a number of years, grandidierite has always been a interesting and hard to get hold of mineral. The story went that there were a few localities close to each other in the south of Madagascar near Fort Dauphin;...
  • Blog entry
    It is time to announce the latest 10,000 minerals have been added to the e-Rocks database, this time it is an all American honour - or should I say honor? Michael Cline of Uravan Minerals (USA) brought up item 660000 earlier today with his listing of a...
  • Blog entry
    Former e-Rocks seller and gemstone dealer from downunder, Klaus Brucksch has just been showing off some grizzly remains trapped in amber. These amber specimens come from Myanmar and the creatures are a bit different to the flies ants and other insects we...
  • Blog entry
    A lot earlier this morning George and his partner Sam became parents for the first time. Their little boy has been named Alexander Thomas Wrigley. There are two knock on effects, I have become a grandparent, and George is now currently covering his new...
  • Blog entry
    Recently I obtained a specimen from Tsumeb without a name. It underwent elemental analysis and turned out to be beudantite. This case shows that elemental analysis can be very useful. Even if the precision is limited, in the most cases EDS allows to...
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    Ever had a discussion along the lines of "I have this old specimen, but it has no labels so I am not sure of where or what it is?" Most of us have and the mystery sometimes never gets solved, we have quite a pile here, which sometimes has a happy ending...
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    George flagged a mineral listing to me last night, an example of kämmererite from Mont Haïto in Togo. Very rarely do we have to add a new country to our geographical database, but until now we had seen nothing listed from this smaller country in Africa....
  • Blog entry
    Andyrobertsite and calcioandyrobertsite are two fascinating mineral species present in a single very famous specimen from Tsumeb.  This superb specimen was featured in the cover of the Mineralogical Record vol.30, num. 3, May-June 1999, jointly with the...
  • Blog entry
    A little bit of excitement for a new discovery/identification of bazzite in the Western Alps, Piedmont, Italy. Usually highly sought after by collectors, bazzite is a rare scandium rich type of beryl usually small with a charateristic strong baby blue...
  • Blog entry
    Here is an old book, with a wonderful fantasy cover. It would be hard not to pick up this combination of graphics and illustrations and look inside. Schubert's Natural History of the mineral kingdom for school and home dates to the late 1880s and was...
  • Blog entry
    March Oxford show is the first of the 2016 series of Oxford shows. A small show but quite well attended this time was no different; it is a good opportunity to meet up with people after the winter months and Tucson. Personally suffering from "Manflu" I...
  • Blog entry
    Those of you who read my last Oxford Show report will remember a mention of Paul Nicholson at Waveney Minerals. We have known Paul as a collector for well over 15 years, and more recently as an occasional show dealer in the UK. As of the last Show report...
  • Blog entry
    Earlier this month I was introduced to a small selection of specimens of talc on dolomite from Portreath Beach on the Lizard, Cornwall. These came to prominence in the Mineralogical Record Show Report for Ste Marie 2017, written up as quote. "In one of...
  • Blog entry
    This really "unique" specimen of fluorite from Cavnic, Romania sold on e-Rocks a few hours ago for €805 (c$900). Not only is the specimen pretty exceptional but also I believe it holds the site record for bidding extension. As the bidding rules go, an...
  • Blog entry
    What a great picture of Texan collector Jim Spann up close with an amazingly good specimen of plumbogummite after pyromorphite from China. I believe there is a general consensus that this is one of the largest/best specimens there is from this recent...
  • Blog entry
    Congratulations to long standing customer of e-Rocks, Andy Christy for the naming of new mineral "andychristyite" after his good self. Andy joins an ever growing list of sellers, customers and visitors to our site to which this honour has been bestowed....
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    George and I have just picked up the collection of Dr Ernst Peter Uerpmann from deepest Spain. The collection of over 3,000 pieces has been in storage since 2002 when Peter moved from Germany to Alicante on his retirement; there are several interesting...
  • Blog entry
    Mining areas above Niaslo village (courtesy Ikram Minerology)                              Recently reading about a new discovery of hematite from Morocco seen at Denver Show reminded me of the locality Niaslo, Basha Valley, Skardu, Pakistan. The...
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    We came across this specimen in material from the Alex Franz collection, formerly belonging Hans-Peter Schroder and dated 1972. The piece is a flat backed sandstone matrix covered in pyromorphite but also small octahedral crystals of galena replaced by...
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    Back in 2009 after Munich show I did a flit back to the Czech Republic to pick up a big consignment of Dalnegorsk minerals - some 40 flats. They are still going strong, here is a galena and manganoan calcite combination that came out this week.
  • Blog entry
    For those who don't already know I have been an avid collector of antique bottles for nearly as long as I have been interested in minerals. Time permitting I like to keep my interests alive by visiting the various "bottle shows" that run here in the UK...
  • Blog entry
    Castle Drogo, Drewsteignton, Devon, UK   Castle Drogo is a large stately home on the eastern side of Dartmoor. Constructed between between 1911 to 1930 by architect Edwin Lutyens for English enterpreneur Julius Drewe in the image of a medieval castle...
  • Blog entry
    September 3rd 2015 was the day that we changed over the e-Rocks website (above) to the current site you see today. It was a very long day and but we got through and have not really looked back since! All in all it has been quite a year on e-Rocks, with...
  • Blog entry
    Last Thursday we had a visit from Aamir Khan our good friend and supplier of all things from Pakistan/Afghanistan. Aamir is based in the UK and Pakistan and spends his equally between the 2 places. As usual he arrived with all kinds of minerals from his...
  • Blog entry
    The project to open a pit to extract tungsten at Hemerdon has been going for a few years, but now it has entered into production with the first concentrate being produced. As reported by the Plymouth Herald "it represents another major milestone in the...
  • Blog entry
    A little "smoke gets in your eyes" moment today as we said goodbye to Chris Mavris who has been helping us for the last 9 months. Behind the scenes at e-Rocks Chris has been diligently working away at some "special" projects for us which we will be...
  • Blog entry
    This leiteite specimen from the Uerpmann collection recently posted on Facebook brought back fond memories of the man who's name was given to the mineral back in 1977. Leiteite was named to honour Luis Antonio Bravo Teixeira-Leite (1942–1999), Portuguese...
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    Recently reported the Michigan Tech website - Two leading Michigan universities have joined up to preserve a historic mineral collection. The University of Michigan Collection, including the collection of Douglass Houghton will be located and displayed...
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    In November 1777 French botanist Joseph Dombey, above, set sail for Peru and Chile, as part of the joint Spanish-French Ruiz & Pavón Expedition. The arduous eleven year botanical exploration provided a wealth of plant specimens, an international...
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    When we were at Bakewell Show last month, we bumped into someone we had not met before, Barry Taylor who also lives very close to us. Barry is a collector at heart, but also runs an attraction called "Geology World" from his home in Chesham, Bucks. Barry...
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    Today was our last show outing for the 2017 Season, Oxford Show is the last mineral show on the UK circuit for 2017. To this end it was rather nice to be greeted with a Christmas tree in the foyer, certainly set the scene for a fun morning  at the show...
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    At the beginning of last week I posted the above picture of Realgar and Native Arsenic on my Facebook page with the caption "Toxic red stuff for Monday". Beautiful red crystals of realgar against a black and white background do look great in detail. My...
  • Blog entry
    I collected the fluorite specimen above back in April 1996. I remember it well from the events of the day before! In those days I used to travel up from the South of England for weekend mooching trips in and around Weardale, usually arriving at the...
  • Blog entry
    Saturday morning, September 2014, we were up bright and early and on the road to Fernleigh, Ontario. Unless you are a mineral collector, you likely will not have heard of the it. We were looking for a kyanite and staurolite occurrence. Actually, I was...
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    In late 2014 we started adding daily updates for closing e-Rocks auctions to Facebook. Basically this is a selection of photos from items in closing auctions to let our Facebook fans see what is happening on the site each day. As a consequence we have...
  • Blog entry
    Recently I have been enjoying the micro photos of Yaiba Sakaguchi from Wakayama, Japan posted on Facebook. Yaiba has kindly let me share some of these on e-Rocks. I am sure you will agree these shine a new perspective on the minerals/localities. Well...
  • Blog entry
    This Sunday is the Paul Lowe Memorial Oxford Show. I am sure it will be a great show and a good opportunity to remember Paul with fellow mineral people. These are the details; Venue: Exeter Hall, Kidlington, North Oxford, OX5 1AB Sunday 27th November...
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    As an online seller it is always good to hear something we have sent out has been received and lived up to expectations. Here is one from Leor Goldberg recently published on Facebook. Recent acquisition! Gypsum with included thometzekite on matrix. Both...
  • Blog entry
    EDS confirmed galloplumbogummite spheres (pictures 1-5; picture no. can be seen by mouse overlay on the pictures below) in germanite renierite ore, accompanied by otjisumeite needles (pictures 8-10), unknown bright phase (lead phospate without Cl,...
  • Blog entry
    Not well known for its mineral collecting Albania seldom figures as a source in many collections or available minerals. In 9 years of e-Rocks we have only ever seen 2 specimens and localities. The current specimen is a newly "discovered" combination of...
  • Blog entry
    Ha Ha, here is a specimen of well crystallised hemimorphite from Bage Mine, Cromford, Derbyshire. According to the label the specimen was collected on 21 November, 1999 by George Fletcher. Bage mine is well known for such UK classics such as matlockite...
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    Last week I took a few days out to visit some favourite old haunts up in Weardale. I have always loved the place and the mining and mineral heritage have created an enduring strange feeling of home from home when ever I visit. The central purpose of my...
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    It was down to Carsten to wrap up August 2015, and boy did he find something a bit unusual! Brunogeierite is an insanely rare iron germanate found only (so far) in a few places, plus Tsumeb. The crystal habit is black octahedral crystals. For a Tsumeb...
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    Last weekend was the last planned road trip for George and I for 2017. We were off to sunny Kent to pick up Norman Cogger's collection, and so there is it all packed and ready to come back. Remarkably we have found space to store it! At TV Towers we have...
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    Our e-Rocks database is continuously growing and flexing as our sellers add new mineral types, varieties and of course the odd thing that we think is relevant to the naming of items on the site. Recently I was adding a group of related "new" minerals,...
  • Blog entry
    Above, a 1.58 gram nugget of gold, resembling a lizard-like creature, with adherent quartz matrix, Zwedru, Liberia. In the early 1980's a couple of good mates of mine were living in Monrovia, Liberia. While there, Linda & Simon visited an artisanal...
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    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...
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    As we head towards Twelfth Night and the final demise of Christmas trees worldwide, we have got back to work with quite a bump. Over the last few days we have been finalising a very large software release and plan to get this deployed in the next week or...
  • Blog entry
      My friend Paul and I recently went to The Weardale Mineral Show at St. Johns Chapel, a small village 7 miles west of Stanhope, here in the North East of England. I primarily went there to meet up with e-Rocks boss Mark. Paul went there because I don't...
  • Blog entry
      As it is my birthday today I thought this little bit of mineral related trivia would brighten up the day. Early last year I was listing an aragonite (and gypsum) specimen from Tomnadashan Mine, Wester Tullich, Loch Tay, Scotland.  An intrguing...
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    Not really a new year's resolution as such, but to make space for new projects, it is time to sell my old collection/hoard of Romanian minerals. Back in the day, before 2002 I put together quite a large selection of Romanian pieces, traveling there when...
  • Blog entry
      Some interesting additions made to the e-Rocks catalogue from new seller Marco Frigerio of Classic Rocks and Gems, for both Iridium Chalk and Iridium Clay: these are examples of an iridium rich sediment found localised in unique layers in deposits...
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    Hi All, We have fixed the problem with accessing e-Rocks yesterday. The rescheduled end times for yesterday's auctions are now updated. Note, these auctions will close across today and tomorrow along with the programme listings with altered times. Please...
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    Yesterday George was off at a stag party so I was left in charge of setting up the new auctions beginning on the day. One of the sub tasks required is to cross check and ensure that any new localities added to the database are cross checked online and...
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    This week it was George's birthday but unfortunately work as usual in the TVM office. As it happened plans were afoot to make some homemade cupcakes and sing happy birthday. Not much chance of blowing the candle out though. All video evidence/sound...
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    I was working on a new mineral the other day and spotted an interesting question raised shared by various sources. Tredouxite (IMA approved pending publication) is named for professor Marian Tredoux in the Department of Geology, University of the Free...
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    I know there are a few collectors of unusual pseuodomorphs out there who might be interested in this. I spotted this specimen chenevixite posted by Carsten Slotta; from the photographs you can see an array of quite well defined scorodite terminations (...
  • Blog entry
    Last weekend I was reading on the BBC website about the discovery of a "lost" portrait painting by Rubens of George Villiers, the 1st Duke of Buckingham (d.1628). It turned out the painting was lost in plain view hanging and on public display in Glasgow'...
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    We already recently reported on the number of new minerals being added to e-Rocks in October, an impressive average of 161 items per day went up in the last 2 months. We thought it might interesting to share some of the other e-Rocks facts and figures...
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    These amazing images recently appeared in the Journal of American Chemistry Society. The picture shows individual molecules obtained by microscopy - the scale is mindblowing - 1 Angstrom length is 1 X 10-10m. Amazing to see how the structures that have...
  • Blog entry
      1730: The first prospectors in the the Franklin Mining District, Dutch miners from the Hudson Valley, unfortunately called the area "the copper tract." Although copper minerals do occur in the orebody - 38 of them, including a rare copper hydroxyl...
  • Blog entry
    Helga Palmer and Gordon Fielder recently unearthed this copper token dated 1788 from the Parys Mountain Copper Mining Company at West Basset in Cornwall. By eighteenth century standards this little token had traveled a long way from home, but with a...
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    Hi all, as the new site is online now and a lot to explore, i just want to give thumbs up for the e-rocks crew. Quite a task to manage all and fix the (inevitable) bugs which are quite usual if a system is relaunched or set up new. I am looking forward...
  • Blog entry
    This discovery in the Ted Smithson Collection and a previous entry by Mike Brooke led me to look into the background of these microscopic grains of gold from Sutherland in Scotland. The sheer amount of time - 24 hours - required to pan 100 or so flakes...
  • Blog entry
    A large block of native iron and weighing approx 20 tonnes. It was brought to the Naturhistoriska riksmuseet in Stockholm Sweden in 1870 by boat and horse-drawn carriage from Greenland's West Coast by Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld to a large fanfare. Naturally...
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    Venus’ rolling uplands in 1982, with Venera 13 in foreground. Well below the sublimation altitude The North Pennines region of England is blessed with mineral riches. During the 18 & 19th centuries, vast quantities of lead, silver and zinc were...
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    Above is a picture from a few days ago of our last pallet of minerals to arrive for 2016. What a busy year it has been and now it is nearly over. Christmas and the holiday period are all set and there are some terrific contributions this year our...
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    In October 1881. the illustrious scientist Benjamin Silliman Jr. was at the Torrance mine, Socorro, New Mexico - He found a new mineral, and described it as vanadiferous mimetite. Famed for his 1855 report on the fractional distillation of Pennsylvania...
  • Blog entry
    ....and alkali mineral collectors. We have just purchased a small collection specialising in these minerals from UK collector Ben Gibson. The collection also contains a small suite from Cornwall, plus interlopers from other places like USA, Norway, India...
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    George has been working with us for nearly 6 months and the mess in the shed is beginning to get organised - it is a very big shed! Recently pulled out of a box of dealer stock I bought from Liz and Dave Hacker over 10 years ago is this Florence Mine...
  • Blog entry
    Jasun and Mandy McAvoy, AKA Mineralman999 have been recently showing off this fine and historic gem topaz crystal. The crystal itself is a well terminated gem specimen from Murzinka, Ekaterinburg, Middle Urals, Russia and at 3.1cm x 2.7cm x 2.5cm it is...
  • Blog entry
    We got up early this morning and traveled to Heathrow, and then on to Munich, arriving at 15:00 local time. Although the show officially opens on Friday and many dealers have not arrived yet, there is already so much to see and take in; it feels as if...
  • Blog entry
    Before we say good bye to our old website we have just passed invoice #350000. From our count start at 175762, we have raised a total of 174238 orders since we started in January 2006. By the time we leave we should reach 175,000 completed sales. Our old...
  • Blog entry
    Weishanite is a very rare gold-silver amalgam, which had two localities. Recent investigations of a unknown metallic hexagonal phase on an old sample hosting verified magnolite showed that this is Weishanite in beautiful hexagonal crystals. I have not...
  • Blog entry
    We just put this specimen of realgar and quartz out onto the website for an upcoming auction. Recovered in circa 2000 just before the "big find" of realgar at Baia Sprie, this specimen displays wonderful contrast between the white and greys of the...
  • Blog entry
      Flicking through the auctions yesterday I spotted a specimen of Mineevite-(Y) - always inquisitive to see the composition of these more obscure minerals I looked at the mineral data. I was even more curious to discover that in the formula, was the...
  • Blog entry
    Belgian collector Jean Dehaye has recently been showing pictures of his recently collected specimen from Beez, Naumur, Belgium. A little over 2cm across comprising a hollow fossil cast with calcified internal ribs covered with micro honey coloured...
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    In terms of desirability, the specimens collected by NASA in ‘69 would be hard to beat. Their superb provenance is excellently documented. They are holotypes of three minerals new to science, and brave men risked their lives to collect them. There were...
  • Blog entry
    10 years ago in 2007 we were visited by Somerset based collector Colin Palk. Colin's specific interests were minerals from Scotland, aided and abetted by his regional work in Scotland for the BBC. Subsequently Colin moved his collection on, it arriving...
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    We didn't quite get to 50000 uploaded items during the first year of the "new" e-Rocks website, but we were very close! Here we are 3 days later and courtesy of Volker Betz with a whitlockite specimen from Tip Top Mine, South Dakota, USA we crossed the...
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    Heads up for a new book entitled Minerals of Georgia, by Bob Cook and Julian Gray, edited by Jose Santamaria, is done and on its way to the printer! Release date is February 1, 2016 and it is already listed in the University of Georgia Press catalogue...
  • Blog entry
      Coldberry Gutter is a prominent scar in the hills high above the Weardale and Teesdale valleys at the head of Bow Lee and Hudeshope valleys, within County Durham, UK. Location of Coldberry Gutter   All across this area there are a number of "hushes...
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    Tomii Mine in Tochigi Prefecture, Honshu Island, Japan is quite well known for its quartz and amethyst clusters with crystals arranged in sprays around a central crystal. This specimen recently posted on Facebook by Shigeki Nishimura in the Quartz group...