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Rocky Mountain Federation of Mineralogical Societies

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Welcome to the Colorado Mineral Society

Celebrating our 83rd Year!
1936 - 2019

Friday, January 4th, 2019 - 7:30 pm
CMS General Membership Meeting
at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Lakewood
Kids, guests and visitors are always welcome

Map to St. Paul's Church


January General Meeting Presentation:

Mineral Specimen Mining, Preparation
and Sales in the 21st Century

by Philip Persson

Traditionally, mineral collecting has been a hobby built around the camaraderie of mineral clubs and societies, scientific collecting and study of minerals, and small-scale selling or specimens to collectors, typically by retired or part-time dealers. In the past ~30 years, however, mineral specimens, particularly the highest quality and most aesthetically-spectacular specimens, have become increasingly viewed as “natural art”, and their value has risen to rival many works of fine art created by man. This shift in collecting has enabled activities that would have been impossible before, such as commercial-scale mining explicitly for mineral specimens, and advanced mineral cleaning and preparation facilities.

Companies such as Collector’s Edge Minerals in Colorado, Fine Minerals International in New York, and Crystal Classics in the U.K. have either re-opened old historic mines specifically to recover specimens or started new mining projects where previous collecting has been limited to informal hand-digging. In addition to such mining operations, modern state-of-the-art mineral preparation labs employing techniques such as multi-stage chemical cleaning, abrasion and mechanical removal of unwanted or damaged crystals or matrix, and restoration of missing crystal portions has led to the availability of the finest-quality mineral specimens ever seen in the history of mineral collecting on the modern market.

As mineral collecting enters a new era of both pricing and specimen quality, however, it is important to reflect on the history of specimen mining and recovery, the availability of high-quality specimens in all prices ranges, from scientific reference samples to museum-quality pieces, and the interface between the mineral dealing and collecting community and the mineralogical research community. This talk will provide a basic overview of mineral specimen mining today, and some of the techniques and methods used to prepare and market the specimens that result from these mining projects.

Philip Persson has been a mineral collector most of his life and grew up collecting and studying the minerals of the well-known deposits at Franklin and Sterling Hill, New Jersey. He financed his graduate school studies with his own small business, Persson Rare Minerals, and has been involved in the Colorado mineral collecting and mineral research communities for the past ~10 years. He received an MSc. In geology from the Colorado School of Mines in May of 2017, where he focused on igneous petrology, mineralogy, and geochemistry, and a B.A. in geology from the University of Colorado at Boulder. He presently works for Collector’s Edge Minerals in Golden, Colorado, assisting with sales, marketing and geology.

CMS Members Jeff Self and Donna Ware featured on Colorado Public Radio's “Colorado Matters”

CMS members Jeff Self and Donna Ware were featured in an interview on the “Colorado Matters” program on Colorado Public Radio. The recorded interview with Ryan Warner can be listened to online via the CPR website at the link below, along with a story and photos about them.

Click Here for Interview

A Visitor’s Guide to Colorado Gemstones Article

On International Gem Society's
Website mentions the
Colorado Mineral Society

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