Above, .539 grams of native gold panned from the Suisgill Burn. The magnificent Hornsby Nugget, top left, naturally folded, weighs 27 milligrams.
In 1977 I drove my Dad's Mazda way up north. To the site of the Great Scottish Gold Rush of 1869. I camped...
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...
Today is Halloween, a fun time of dressing up, lighting lanterns and "trick or treating".
Our own ghoul face agate lives all year round on a shelf with the family pictures above our stairs. We bought him back in 2000 when Christian (my wife) and I were...
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.
There has been a sensational recent find of fluorite in Connemara, County Galway, in the Republic of Ireland.
TVM has been given exclusive access to the locality and has been given first refusal to the material released by the owners.
Map of Connemara,...
The day before we went to Munich the nice man from UPS turned up on my doorstep with quite a large box.
As it happened, the Sunday before I was out dog walking and pocket pinging on messenger learning all about a little discovery up in Weardale.
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...
It has been very quiet on the blog front for a while, there has been a reason for this which will be explained at a later stage; but we are back with some great news (for a change).
e-Rocks seller Jason Smith, better known as Bucket of Holes Minerals,...
Just approved and pending publication here is news of yet another vanadate mineral, and this time by coincidence it has a "van" in the name.
Vandermeerscheite is a new mineral chemically similar to carnotite.
It was in August last year that we reported the our page on Facebook had reached 8,000 likes, well now we have risen to the 10,000 mark.
We continue to use our page to provide our Facebook followers a daily snapshot of the e-Rocks site new listings,...
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...
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...
Today we saw our e-Rocks User registration count reach 7500; this means that barring the odd D.Duck and K.Kong we are connected to 7500 mineral collectors worldwide.
Great news if you are prospective seller, re-assuring if you have not already...
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...
Reiner and I retired to Cobalt, Ontario, Canada a little over a year ago. When we aren't out exploring the old mine sites in and around the area, we devote our time in support of the Cobalt Historical Society.
The group maintains the Heritage Silver...
A feature of the new website is the ability of our Database and your catalogue to hold and display items by Provenance.
Behind the scenes we provide a whole inventory system that connects minerals to people, collectors, historic dealers and institutions...
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...
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...
Until I researched it I would never have thought vanadinite likely to occur at Ilfeld in Harz, Germany.
The specimen we discovered is a manganite matrix with tiny pockets of braunite, and with one solitary yellow (part) crystal within.
Being solitary and...
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...
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...
The other day we added the new mineral wildenauerite to the database.
This phosphate mineral with the formula:
Zn(Fe3+,Mn2+)2MnFe3+(PO4)3(OH)3(H2O)6·2H2O was approved pending being published by the IMA in August/September 2017.
Isostructural with new...
Back in November 2011 I offered this specimen in my birthday auction.
It is still one of my favourite Weardale specimens ever.
Here is its listing
Heights Quarry, County Durham, United Kingdom
Miniature (4.5-7 cm)
Size: H:4.8cm x W:4.8cm x D:4....
This amazing specimen of dolomite was collected today from the mines at Trepca in Kosovo.
Well known for its excellent common sulphide and carbonate crystallisation, I have never seen on like this before!
Back in 1979 at a place called Tomahawk Creek near to Rubyvale in Central Queensland, Australia, a 2020 carat (404gr) yellow gem sapphire was discovered.
The story alleges that a local boy, on his way home from school, spotted the gem exposed in loose...
It has already been a week since Oxford show and we are heavily into our pre-Christmas preparations.
Last week we had a visit from Ed Loye, who stopped by to take a look at the TV Towers operation. We have known Ed since both his and our early days, and...
Here we are back in Bakewell for the 15th consecutive year.
By comparison with others a short innings but one of the constants throughout the life and times of TVM.
George and I celebrated with a Chinese meal in the restaurant that used to be an Indian...
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.
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...
Analytical investigations of the germanite and renierite associated secondary minerals have lead to the discoveries of many unique minerals eg. otjisumeite, bartelkeite, stottite from the Tsumeb Mine, Otavi Highlands, Namibia in the past decades.
Here we are enjoying a fairly non mineralogical week away in Harlech, Wales.
This seagull apparently comes with the rental, certainly knows when the meal times are, and if not on time will tap at the window.
As seagulls go, he is very placid.
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...
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;...
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...
Today (23rd October) we notched up item #680000 into our specimen database, completing another 10,000 increment to the catalogue.
The honoured rock is a specimen of Cleusonite from Fibbia, Ticino in Switzerland. The specimen was listed by Soenke Stolze...
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...
I was recently offered this "Elementary Collection of 100 Minerals Fossils & Shells". The collection was originally supplied by Bryce M Wright, then of 90 Gt Russell Street, London.
The mahogany box with two trays is in fantastic condition with...
After a short break we welcome back e-Rocks dealer – Jaroslaw Skupiewski, from Poland.
Under the banner Geo-Trader Minerals Jaroslaw has been establishing himself as an European show dealer for the last 12 years, but he has also been busy online...
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...
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...
It is that time of year again and I am sure you will have noticed a number of "Munich" themed auctions lining up on the schedule.
Suffice to say there have been some tremendous minerals coming through and still more to come over the next week or so, and...
Marc Allen Fleischer owner of the Fleischer Museum has been showing of this interesting specimen from Tsumeb.
One of the main directions of the Fleischer collection is "Rough and Cut" where a mineral is displayed side by side as natural mineral with a...
George uncovered this photogenic little millerite specimen last week and the picture caused quite a stir on Facebook over the weekend.
Labelled as being from the Windsor Colliery, Abertridwr near Caerphilly, Wales it displays a very pretty array of...
George pulled this out of a box in the warehouse and challenged me to make a decent spin of this. Black & white minerals are proving quite hard to photograph in the new box, this one has lots tiny detail and depth of field.
Aegirine - Mount Malosa,...
Congratulations to Chris Spiromitros of Greekrocks - he has just updated/upgraded his website.
He is also the first Dealer to put his e-Rocks auctions on his website using our Page App.
Bernissart Show is an annual event in Hainaut region of Belgium.
The 28th show was held this weekend (29-30 August)
Here are some photos of the show and a link to the original write up posted by Belgian collector Max Tom on his excellent blog site (in...
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...
This super quality pure blue Lapis polished freeform 77cm tall and weighing over 48Kg is going under the hammer next month at an auction in Billingshurst, Kent, UK.
The auctioneers estimate is £5,000 - £7,000 - see link below.
Looks a really good one,...
A very early start from TV Towers, to Heathrow and onto the short flight to Munich.
Really it is a very easy journey and a good time for George and I to catch up on business and plan for the next few days.
The view of mountains of Bavaria as we came...
On 12th August 2005 we relocated family and business to what we affectionately call Thames Valley Towers in Twyford, Reading.
I thought it would be fun to reproduce and share our original posting covering the event, funny how 10 years later though not...
On 1st October 2017 there will be some changes to the e-Rocks.com business plus the Terms & Conditions.
The e-Rocks.com business will be transferring from our current Thames Valley Minerals ownership to a new company registered in the UK, e-Rocks Ltd...
Facebook friend and collector Michael Pfeil posted a gallery of fine micro photos of specimens collected in the Bergischen Land area of North Rhine - Westphalia.
Here is a translation of his album introduction and a few of his 165 photos.
"In this album...
Analysis of a sample from the Moschellandsberg mainly consisting of malachite, calomel and minor eglestonite provided the evidence of a
new mercury arsenate from this locality: Chursinite.
Previous SEM-EDS analysis revealed only the elements Hg, As, O...
e-Rocks seller and well traveled field collector Tasos Tsinidis from Greece, has some wonderful minerals and stories to tell about his exploits.
He is knowledge of all things mineralogical and Greek is immense, he also is excellent at preparing and...
The other day we picked out a specimen from the Ted Smithson collection, namely a witherite labelled as from the Joycey Shaft at Langley Barony Mine near Haydon Bridge, Northumberland, UK.
It is the first time we have seen anything from this locality so...
Madeiraite was named after the Madeira island. It's the type-locality mineral for the Automous Region of Madeira.
The species was found by Pedro Alves in two gabbro outcrops near Porto da Cruz, Machico, northeast Madeira Island, Portugal. These small...
13th & 14th August 2016 is a date for all UK based collectors to add to your diaries....
........there is a new show being added to the UK mineral show circuit.
Derbyshire based Don Edwards in conjunction with Tennants Auctioneers are launching the...
The unique mineralogy of Jachymov mining district in the Czech Republic is known for many years and many new - especially uranium bearing minerals - could be described with the help of modern analytical methods. Recent analytical work has shown that...
Some highlights from today's photography at TV Towers
If you don't already know about it, here is a website for anyone who is interested in old mining history, especially related to the western states of the USA.
The website contains a huge and comprehensive database of mining localities, mining information...
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,...
George and I were discussing a mineral "anatolyite" newly added to the e-Rocks database, and couldn't find out who it was named for via the usual sources.
We know Anatoly Kasatkin very well, and through his involvement with systematic minerals and the...
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...
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...
Jill Brunner's listing in her current Kalahari Classics Auction for a calcite and pyrite specimen from NChwanning takes the mineral additions on e-Rocks to #640000, or 140,000 items added since in October 2015.
Jill was the lucky "winner" of this...
Out for a run last night and listening to the radio, in particular an excerpt about Greek mythology being discussed by Stephen Fry.
Not my usual digest but it has been one of those weeks!
Anyway the piece was about Dionysus the Ancient Greek god of wine...
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...
In the depths of Peter Uerpmann's collection we came across a block of massive crystalline halite - rock salt.
The locality is given as Asse II, probably picked up during his time as a worker in the German Nuclear industry.
Asse (Shaft) II is...
Ahead of our trip to Munich we have just installed another new feature for all users of e-Rocks and Facebook.
Within the e-Rocks Facebook page there are now 5 new page tabs with Apps that let you do the following.
look up and open...
Everyone who is connected to the world of minerals will surely have heard by now of the tragic and early death of John Veevaert.
Reading the tributes over on Facebook you really get the feeling of what an important and inspirational figure he had become...
Expert photographer and mineral collector from Austria, Andreas Schmid has recently being showing some excellent photographs using a light source at an extreme angle to the faces of the subject crystals.
I would have trouble explaining the physics...
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...
e-Rocks now has real time bidding and status updates; these change and prompt you automatically without refreshing your browser etc
In addition to this we have just added our network manager to support this real time information to your device.
This article presents my basic workflow for finding, exploring and recording new localities. It touches on a number of novel, arguably groundbreaking, technologies that greatly enhance the capabilities of the average mineral collector such as...
Coming up to completion in today's Cartils minerals auction this specimen of obsidian from Douglas, Idaho, USA was designated item number 220000 in our catalogue when uploaded.
Our catalogue started back in January 2006, and has grown with some...
In the office this morning I worked out some interesting e-Rocks facts for the last year.
In 2016 we have run 1555 auctions with 59,373 listings added to the site. We have sold 49,161 items.
Also in 2016 we have served 629,183 visitors with 6.45M pages...
A nice photograph of our home for 2 nights over the Bakewell Show weekend.
This has been our regular stop over for 14 years - now equipped with WiFi we will be online answering emails etc and hopefully adding some news from the show.
Looking forward to a...
The Nick Bartlet collection, we purchased in 2004 still continues to provide interesting and uncommon items from its boxes.
This most recent discovery is a specimen of schröckingerite from the Peath Lode on the 17th Level at Geevor, Cornwall.
In 1985 I had acquired some palladium metal, as a by-product of some illicit platinum reclamation I was undertaking. I made the above quarter-ounce "nugget" with it, drilled to be worn as a pendant.
Natural Pd specimens below, from the type locality, ...
Fom the last Oxford Show.
UK Collector and Dealer Peter Briscoe has just moved house, and has still to finish unpacking boxes from his previous move - a familiar story!
As part of this a box of superb boracite specimens he collected around 20 years ago...
Looking forward to next Saturday when it is Bakewell time once more!
For us Bakewell show each year is a must and George and I will be making the trip again this year. We hope to see many of our UK based collector friends there and will be sharing some...
As they say "you live and learn" and in the interest of mineralogy this is nearly a daily experience.
The photograph above shows some little grain-like crystals of native sulphur set on scorodite from Hemerdon Bal in Devon, UK. I have never seen these...
I was visiting an e-Rocks customer the other day, and was awestruck by his collection of radio-active artefacts.
Many things have changed over the years as learning and science have made our lives safer, but looking back some of these are just incredible...
It has now been 3 years since George joined us at TVM and a week since joining e-Rocks ltd!
To celebrate he went off on his own this week to appraise and buy a mineral collection down in the West Country.
We received a lead about the collection a few...
Here I am back in the office on a wet and dull Monday morning after the 2018 Bakewell Show. Having spent a “full on” weekend in the bosom of the UK mineral collecting scene I am feeling a little bit tired.
As usual George and I drove up to Bakewell from...
Mineral photography continues to be well written up in many places, and no doubt will get a few mentions here from time to time; we do have one or two expert photographers selling and contributing to our pages.
Personally we have photographing minerals...
The new year continues this week with a full program of auctions from the e-Rocks sellers.
As usual a huge and diverse range covering most aspects of collecting.
This diamond listed in the latest SAL minerals auction is a good example, weighing in at 57....
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...
The new e-Rocks has an archive of approximately 180,000 specimens accrued over 9 years of listing.
We have now made these available to registered users of our site with further mineral and location details tied in.
Here is a rather good specimen of...
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.
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...
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...
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...
As previously mentioned yesterday's show was dedicated to the memory of Paul Lowe who had organised the show since 1993. It was great to see so many people there.
Paul's children Matt and Emma had arranged some photo tributes to Paul as well as being on...
It hardly seems a week since Bakewell show last Saturday, where does the time go!
We had a great time and despite the intention of not picking up too much stuff, it would be rude not to take part in the now ritual hunt for interesting and unusual things...
Frequently pointed out by kind visitors are the typos in the texts I produce - as always my thanks for the assistance with this!
This time this is not a typo of fluorite but an interesting specimen of a mineral variety I had not looked into before.
This project is all about new finds which were confirmed by XRD and other methods.
It will be updated from time to time.
The download of the file for December 2017 is available here:
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.
Art Deco walnut display cabinet, circa 1930
Most people in tuned into the news will be aware of the media splash behind the launch of the new Apple iphone X (and 8) the other day.
It has been widely publicised that the X phone...
Every alpine collector's dream (and most other people too) is to find the perfect pocket.
Austrian Strahler Peter Eberhard has been busy on the Alps at Habachtal.
Earlier this month Peter was investigating a previously worked opening high up in the...