CMS April Virtual Presentation

Friday, April 2nd, 2021 at 6:30pm (MST)

Please join us this Friday, April 2nd by Zoom for a presentation by Jose Santamaria, Executive Director of the Tellus Science Museum who will be talking about the Geology, Mineralogy, and Mineral History of Graves Mountain, Lincoln County, Georgia. The abstract is below.

Join Zoom Meeting:

Meeting ID: 822 5014 8844
Passcode: 283293

+1-346-248-7799 (Houston)
Meeting ID: 822 5014 8844
Passcode: 283293
Amber Brenzikofer
CMS President



Geology, Mineralogy, and Mineral History of
Graves Mountain,
Lincoln County, Georgia

Jose Santamaria, Executive Director
Tellus Science Museum

Unrivaled as Georgia’s most famous mineral locality, Graves Mountain also ranks among the nation’s top classic mineral sites. It is mentioned in every respectable mineral handbook and is one of the fifty locations selected for the 2008 book American Mineral Treasures. First collected in 1859, Graves Mountain has produced world-class rutile, lazulite, pyrophyllite, iridescent goethite, and more than 30 other minerals, an assortment once described as “the occurrence of an interesting association of rather uncommon minerals” (Thomas Watson, Georgia Geologic Survey, 1912).

The site’s geology is intertwined with that of Georgia, involving volcanic island arcs, hydrothermal alteration, metamorphism, secondary mineralization, and weathering. The story also involves Graves Mountain as a picnic location for locals (even politicians), a place for continuous specimen collecting including a connection to Tiffany’s, and a massive mining project for an unexpected mineral resource. Most remarkably, more than 160 later, one can still go to Graves Mountain to collect mineral specimens.

About our speaker: Jose Santamaria:

Jose Santamaria has been director of Tellus Science Museum, formerly the Weinman Mineral Museum, since 1996. Born in Cuba, Jose grew up in Atlanta, where he earned a Degree in Visual Arts at Georgia State University. Prior to entering the museum field, he worked in the restaurant business for 20 years during which time he also ran an art studio in Atlanta. His life-long interest in geology, minerals, and science in general led him to his current position at Tellus. During his tenure, the Weinman expanded from a 9000-square-foot mineral museum into a 120,000 square foot award-winning science facility.

Having collected at Graves Mountain since the 1980s, Jose has written the Mineral History of Graves Mountain (Matrix Magazine, 2003-2004) and co-written the Graves Mountain chapter in American Mineral Treasure (2008). He is also co-author of The 50 Coolest Things at Tellus (2015) and editor of Minerals of Georgia (2016). Active for 35 years in the mineral education community, Jose is past president of the Georgia Mineral Society and the Rome Georgia Mineral Society. He is also a past president of the Georgia Association of Museums, and in January 2016 was awarded the Museum Professional of the Year award by the organization. He and his wife Maia live in Rome’s Old East Rome neighborhood in a renovated 1930 craftsman bungalow with their two dogs and one cat.