Snapshots from the Tucson 2001 Gem and Mineral Show
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The Main Event III - Going for the Gold

Here's an overview of a case of native golds that was assembled from a number of collections and displayed in case 15 as a companion display to the cases of native coppers and silvers previously shown. This case harbored some very aesthetic golds so let's have a closer look at some of the specimens contained within.

The gold specimen pictured above left was about 4" overall. It is from the Mockingbird mine, CA and was displayed courtesy the Meieran collection. The shape of this gold suggested a nudibranch to me, which is a type of free swimming marine mollusk with external gills and no shell.

Pictured above right was an awesome gold specimen about 6" overall. It is from the Colorado Quartz mine and was shown courtesy the David collection. The shape of this gold reminded me of a bird.

The interesting Russian gold crystal above left was about 1/2" on edge and identified as from Siberia. It was displayed courtesy the Meieran collection.

I appreciated this one's crystals and symmetry and thought the approximately 4" gold on quartz depicted above right to be very handsome. It is from the Colorado Quartz mine, CO and this piece was also displayed courtesy the Meieran collection.

Depicted above left is a 1 1/2" or so California gold specimen which was displayed courtesy the Larson collection.

Above center is an approximately 4" overall gold from the Aroroy Mining District, Masbate, Philippines. It was displayed courtesy the Bergman collection.

Shown above right is an Eagle's Nest, CA gold that was about 1" overall, displayed courtesy the Mann collection.

While each of the four golds shown above have somewhat different aesthetics, I found all of them appealing on its own merits. The 2" or so high specimen shown above far left is from Santa Elena, Venezuela. It was displayed courtesy the Halpern collection.

The specimen above center left was about 5" high. This gold is from the Ground Hog mine, Gilman, CO and was shown courtesy the Harvard collection.

Above center right is a gold specimen from the Zapata Fields, Elena, Venezuela. This one was about 1 1/2" high and it was displayed courtesy the Asselborn collection.

The Alaskan gold shown above far right was also about 1 1/2" high and it was displayed courtesy the Dyl collection. This one reminds me of a gold crown I recently lost from a tooth I broke when I was a kid rolling down a hill inside a tractor tire. Actually, I didn't break my tooth until I was no longer inside the tire...

The rather sculptural gold on matrix above left reminds me of circa 1950's modern art. This piece was about 3" overall and it is from Graveyard Hill, Tuolumene County, CA. This specimen was shown courtesy the Leicht collection.

The 5" or so high California gold pictured above right was displayed courtesy the Wilson collection.

I just couldn't seem to pick a clear favorite gold among several beautiful contenders in this case, but the specimen shown above was definitely in the running. While at about 2 1/2" overall this specimen was not as large as some of the others, but I liked the way the way this gold had crystallized and how the crystals formed up into several masses perched on the quartz matrix. The two larger perched clumps spanned about 1". This aesthetic specimen is from the Mockingbird mine, CA and was shown courtesy the Meieran collection.

The Australian gold depicted above left was about 1 1/2" overall. It was anonymously displayed.

The pretty gold shown above right was about 1" overall. This specimen was from the Colorado Quartz mine, CA and was displayed courtesy the Meieran collection.

Pictured above is an awesome California gold that was about 4" overall. This specimen was shown courtesy the Wilson collection.

Depicted at left is a pretty gold which was shown apart from the above case of golds by the Collector's Edge in case 40. This specimen is about 1" overall and labeled as from the Gold Lena River District, Yakutsk, Siberia, Russia.

Above right is a pretty Russian galena with quartz. This specimen was about 4" overall and from Dal'negorsk, Primorskiy Kray, Russia. It was displayed in case 38 courtesy the A.E. Seaman Mineral Museum.

Pictured above left is a rather swank emerald on calcite from the La Paz level, Cosquez mine, Columbia. This specimen was about 3" overall and the emerald crystal is about 2" long and 1/2" in diameter. It displayed in case 138 from the Frinchillo collection.

Also displayed in case 138 from the Frinchillo collection was this gemmy, red, red Moroccan vanadinite, with the locality given by its label as Near Acif Mine Area, Mibladen, Morocco. It was very similar in appearance to a Moroccan vanadinite shown from Jordi Fabre's Fishbowl earlier in this year's Tucson Show report, but even larger at about 4" overall.

Shown here are a pair of 20th century Russian malachite urns on gold legs that I estimated to be approximately 20" or so overall. These were displayed in case 95 courtesy the Lizzardo Museum of Lapidary Art, Elmhurst, IL. I've been pondering display stands for various types of rocks recently and the Art Deco, winged goddess motif employed on these urns legs caught my eye as something that might be adapted to cast elements for a fancy sphere stand.

The rose and hummingbird inlay pieces pictured above along with the following four pieces below are all examples of the numerous pieces of silver inlay work displayed in case 87 by Tucson's Richard and Flora Milliron of Silver Quail Studio. Richard and Flora's inlay work is very fine and their pieces often employ opal to good effect. I particularly admired the necklace piece featuring a pair of hummingbirds but all of their work is arresting.

Beautiful silver inlay with opal peacock and butterfly from case 87, by Richard and Flora Milliron.

Silver inlay roadrunner and butterfly also from case 87. I thought the Milliron's selection of materials for this road runner appropriate (note the wing detail) and that those employed in the butterfly above right worked to particularly good effect.

I can appreciate and relate to just where this pup is at and I think the expression on this young rockhound's face pretty much says it all... I'm with you, kid!

He's obviously found himself a keeper from the freebie bornite bin at the Junior Education Area at the Main Event. Needless to say the extensive Junior Ed Area, an annual Main Event feature sponsored and staffed courtesy undergraduate geology students from the University of Arizona, is very popular with local parents and their children. No rock pup leaves the Junior Ed Area wanting for a collection of cool rocks.

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