Newsletter - October, 1997
SMITHSONIAN HALL OPENS>
MUSINGS - Margaret Heinek >
CLUB-EACH YEAR-ONE ROCKHOUND - By Margaret M. Pearson>
- BRRRR!!!! Part 2 - By Mel Albright>
FINANCIAL REPORT - By Toby Cozens, AFMS Treasurer>
SHELL" or New Zealand Opal! - by Ross Cranswick>
YOU SAY PAUA?
ITS NAME SHALL BE CALLED..... - by Diane Dare>
Editor's Note: The opening is scheduled for Sept. 20, 1997
The Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems and Minerals
AT: National Museum of Natural History
Constitution Avenue and 10th Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20560
The Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems and Minerals opened September 20,
1997. Designed to showcase the world-renowned National Gem and Mineral Collection, the new
hall explores dynamic earth processes, including crystal and ore formation, volcano and
earthquake origins, plate tectonics and the formation of the solar system. The new hall is
named in honor of Mrs. Janet Annenberg Hooker, in recognition of her $5 million
contribution toward its creation.
A team of more than 100 curators, designers, scientists, architects, engineers,
artists, educators, writers and researchers developed the 20,000 square foot project
starting in early 1989. The hall features natural and re-constructed environmental
surroundings. It also incorporates interactive computers, animated graphics, film and
video presentations, floor and ceiling treatments, hands-on specimens and tailored display
HARRY WINSTON GALLERY
This gallery features the renowned Hope Diamond, the world's largest faceted deep blue
diamond. The 45.52-caratt Hope Diamond has a history tinged with speculation and
superstition. A gift from Harry Winston to the American people in 1958, the Hope Diamond
is exhibited with other geological products of the earth. Included are the striking Tucson
ring meteorite, a naturally sculpted sandstone concretion from Fountainbleu, France, a
146-kg (325-1b) sheet of natural copper found in Michigan and a quartz crystal group from
Namibia weighing approximately 600-kg (1,320-lbs). Also featured, will be a polished slab
of migmatite, a rock formed at high temperature and pressure deep within the earth.
NATIONAL GEM COLLECTION
This section showcases selections from what is recognized to be the
finest collection of gemstones and jewelry pieces in the world. Among the highlights will
be the Hooker Emerald, Hooker Starburst Diamonds, Star of Asia, Rosser Reeves Ruby, Chalk
Emerald, Marie Antoinette diamond earrings, Napoleon Diamond Necklace, the rare DeYoung
red and pink diamonds and a 23,000-carat topaz gem.
(Editor's note: This topaz is a gift from the members of the AFMS.)
SPLENDORS OF THE MINERAL WORLD
A striking array of glistening crystal specimens emphasize the importance of minerals in
everyday life. Considered the building blocks of earth, scientists have identified nearly
4,000 minerals. The mineral and crystal treasures area will display the most spectacular
minerals, crystals and gems and encourage visitors to explore topics such as crystal
shape, color and growth and where minerals are found.
A "walk-through mine" features actual crystal pockets and ore veins to create
four U.S. mines embedded in rock-like walls. The exhibit incorporates mineral deposits
from a historic zinc mine in Sterling Hill, New Jersey; a semi-precious gem mine in Amelia
County, Virginia; historic copper from the Copper Queen Mine, Bisbee, Arizona; and lead
from the Fletcher Mine, Viburnum, Missouri.
ROCKS ABOVE AND BELOW
A re-creation of a cave will feature large touchable specimens and simulated rock
outcroppings which tell the story of how rocks are formed. The surface forces of wind,
water, gravity, and deep earth forces of incredible heat and pressure are also explained.
PLATE TECTONICS GALLERY
This gallery shows how earthquakes, mountain chains and volcanoes are the primary result
of the constantly shifting earth surface. State-of-the-art exhibit techniques include a
HDTV theater which explores these dynamic earth processes, and visitor interactive maps
and models which explain how the heat of the earth's interior serves as the engine that
drives the change of our planet.
EARTH, MOON & METEORITES
This section explores the intricate puzzle of the birth and history of our solar system
through film, models and touchable specimens. Exhibit areas examine how meteorites -- the
oldest objects known, reveal the earliest history of our earth and solar system, four to
five billion years ago. The meteorite gallery will feature hundreds of specimens,
including some from the Moon and Mars.
From the atomic to the astronomical, the new Janet Annenberg Hooker Hall of Geology, Gems
and Minerals presents the past, present and future of the planet Earth. This is the first
time a major fund-raising effort has been undertaken to renovate a permanent hall at the
National Museum of Natural History. To finance the new complex, a total of $8.5 million
has been raised from private sources.
By Margaret Heinek,
This month will be a very busy month for most of us as our AFMS Convention will be
in Mississippi, and will be our 50th Anniversary. This will be my last column as president
of the AFMS, and sincerely hope we will have a good attendance at the meetings and show.
The Mississippi club has worked hard to make this a convention to remember. So I will see
There are several items that will be brought up in the meeting that will be of
interested to all of the seven Federations, so come and make your ideas known. This is the
only way the officers and directors will be aware of your thoughts.
Recently, a "mutual business decision" ended the AFMS affiliation with
MBNA's credit card. MBNA America will continue to carry your account, if you want to stay
with them. But as of several months ago they have not sent the AFMS the .25¢ for each use
of the credit card by AFMS members. It seems that the company wanted to do this 2 years or
so ago, but decided to continue with the AFMS. As I stated last month, this was due,
particularly to so few members that had gotten the card. I was asked if I had any thing to
do with this decision, "NO I DID NOT". Dan at the main office was notified that
they were withdrawing their support from us. He called
to inform me of MBNA'S decision, and asked if I had gotten a letter from the company, no I
did not, and have not. The latest statement contains the news of their withdrawal. Some of
our members have canceled their credit card from MBNA, they are mad about the "way
the company has done us". The decision is yours!
It appears that a proposal is being made, that will be voted on at the October Convention,
to supply each Federation Supply Chairman with from $150.00 to $200.00 worth of supplies
from the main office, at no charge. The proposal as presented, suggests that this expense
be taken out of the interest that the Endowment Fund sends, but the feeling is, that this
should be taken from the "increase" of dues sent to the AFMS from each Regional
Federation for their members. The Regional Federations can then charge for the supplies,
and that money is then put back into their own Regional treasury.
Another item I am excited about, there are several GOOD programs that have been
received and judged with a high score, and hope each Federation will be supplied with a
copy of these programs for their Program Committee.
I hope to see many of our members at the Convention, not only to attend meetings,
(to help make decisions that affects the AFMS) go on field trips, display competition,
view the many displays, hear some excellent speakers, and visit with mutual friends. So
come to have fun!!!!
Of all words of tongue and pen,
The saddest are, `It might have been,'
More sad are these we daily see:
`It is, but hadn't ought to be.'
-- Francis Brett Hart
EACH CLUB-EACH YEAR-ONE ROCKHOUND
By Margaret M. Pearson, Chair
The following rockhounds are being recognized for they're outstanding service by the
AFMS through its program EACH CLLJB-EACH YEAR-ONE ROCKHOLTND. The names of rockhounds
honored by their fellow members for their contribution to their club and the hobby are not
published here in any particular order. The AFMS congratulates these hardworking club
¨ Dr. Eaner Higgins, Kalispell RockHound Club, Kalispell, MT, is a long time member who
has donated faceted stones to the club for raffles, assisted members in need and donated
faceted stones to the NFMS for the Scholarship Fund auction.
¨ Sallee and Bob Braumbaugh, Santa Cruz Mineral & Gem Society, Santa Cruz, CA. Bob
has been president and for years field trip chair, and has given many hundreds of hours of
his time, as well as samples of rocks, minerals and fossils, to the education of community
members, from elementary school children to college students. Sallee has been show
chairperson and for over ten years has published educational articles and vital
information as editor of the club bulletin.
¨ Al and Shirley Schleif, are honored by Contra Costa Mineral & Gem Society. Long
time members, both are past presidents and display at home shows and away. Shirley was
bulletin editor and designed the impressive cover for Diablo Diggin's. She gives programs
and demonstrates the art of slate carving. Al demonstrates copper enameling and teaches
the art to seniors. Both do many more things to further our rockhound hobby.
¨ Dave and Betty Thompson, Fort Kearney Rock Club, Kearney, NE. Dave and Betty are active
in two federation clubs, have demonstrated at area schools, shows, swaps, and meetings
since 1986. Betty organizes the children's table at shows.
¨ Max Ford, Ken-Roc Gem & Mineral Society of Rockford, IL. Max has been active in his
club since 1975. He was club president and show chairman concurrently for eleven years. In
the remaining years he has been available for lapidary room teaching, show co-chairing,
directorship, advising and helping out wherever needed. He experimented with making
cabochons out of Chrysler paint buildup, with successful results. He's an invaluable club
¨ Carl and Ethel Dach, Blackhawk Rock Club, Rockford, IL. When other club officers were
unable to perform their official duties, Carl stepped in and performed them. Carl and
Ethel spend much time getting youngsters interested in the lapidary field - cabbing and
wire-wrapping. They have contributed much to our club and to the future of lapidary.
¨ Eileen Ferris, Black Hawk Gem & Mineral Club, Rock Island, U. Eileen has spent many
years assisting out club put on shows and swaps. She has given many talks to school groups
and has served extensively in the lapidary area, conducted workshops, and traveled to many
¨ Marv Hong, Cedar Valley Rock & Mineral Society, Cedar Rapids, IA. Marv is an
energetic leader in our active club. He has bee president (6yrs), show chairman (8 yrs),
auction chairman (4 yrs), and has held many other offices. Marv is also in related
organizations (MAPS) and is highly regarded by professional geologists.
¨ Birdie Nichols, Mineralogical Society of Cleveland, Cleveland Hts, OH. Birdie has been
an active and devoted rockhound" for over 25 years. She is involved in faceting,
cabbing, scrimshaw, carving, casting and jewelry design and manufacture. In addition, she
has served as a club office in three different clubs, has and is currently on a club show
committee, and displays at area shows. She regularly presents programs to the clubs to
which she belongs, to other clubs and to the public. These, and other, activities continue
even though she is in her mid 70's.
¨ Jerry and Karen Capps, Madison Lapidary & Mineral Club, Madison, WI. Jerry and
Karen have been demonstrating and promoting faceting and soapstone carving for our club
and numerous other clubs for many years. Both are eager to help one get started and
encourage youth participation.
¨ Bill Corley, Southern ]Illinois Earth Science Club, Benton, IL. Bill generously gives
of his time, resources and energy for the club. He serves as club program chairman and
arranges club field trips. Despite poor health, he promotes interest in our hobby by
giving programs to schools and civic organizations and will gladly share his specimens
with anyone who is interested. He has been a valuable asset to our club for many years.
¨ Travis Paris, Knoxville Gem and Mineral Society, Knoxville, TN. Travis strives almost
endlessly to promote the hobby. Demonstrates boundless energy and devotion to the club. He
has been past president, current and many times vice-president and program chairperson. He
has given many programs and led many field trips. He is the current president of SIMS and
most deserving of this nomination. We THANK him.
¨ Maurice Phillippe, Gem and Mineral Society of, Franklin, North Carolina, Inc. Maurice
joined our club in 1983 and has served on the Board as a director, has been field trip
chairman and the manager of the society's workshops. Currently he is serving as the
assistant curator of the Society's Museum as well as manager of the workshops. He
demonstrates faceting at the Society's gem shows and he has taught many of our members to
Afms Safety Chair
There are two bad effects that you can get from being too cold too long. One is
hypothermia and the other is frostbite.
HYPOTHERMIA is low body tempera-ture. Warning signs are slurred speech, memory loss,
disorientation, incoherence, uncontrollable shivering, and a sensation of extreme
If you suspect hypothermia, take the person's temperature. If it below 95F or 35C, seek
emergency medical help immediately! If that isn't available, or will take a long time,
start by warming the person SLOWLY. Warm their body first - if needed, cuddle with them.
Get them into dry clothing and cover them well with a warm blanket - including their head.
No alcohol drugs, coffee, or hot beverage or food should be allowed. A warm broth is
great. Do NOT warm their arms and legs first because this drives cold blood towards the
heart and may cause heart failure!
PREVENTION of hypothermia is mainly common sense. Avoid hard work - pushing a car,
shoveling snow, walking in drifts, and the like. The strain of cold with hard labor can
cause a heart attack. Avoid working up a sweat. Remove outside clothes layers to avoid
perspiration and overheating and then put the layers back on when you finish. Don't eat
snow. If you want a snow cone, take the snow indoors.
FROSTBITE is simply frozen body tissue. The warning signs are a loss of feeling and a
white or pale appearance in the extremities - fingers, toes, ears, nose, or cheeks.
TREATMENT of frostbite requires immediate medical help. If you must wait, slowly re- warm
the affected areas. BUT, remember that if they also have hypothermia, the body must be
PREVENTION of frostbite means two things. One is proper clothes - mittens, layered
waterproof clothes, double socks, and so on as mentioned in Part 1. The other is ordinary
common sense - DON'T go out in extremely cold weather if you can avoid it at all. If you
must go out, don't stay long at one spell. Come in and warm up frequently.
Reference for these articles: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National
By Toby Cozens
RECEIPTS AND DISBURSEMENTS
AFMS CASH ACCOUNTS
Anticipated surplus $5775.00
Are tectonic plates dishwasher-safe?
or New Zealand Opal!
by Ross Cranswick
Cranestone Gems <email@example.com>
>Internet Web Site http://www.tz-gems.com
Paua is a beautiful shell known for its beautiful colors. There are many tricks to
working with the shell. The Paua shell occurs only in New Zealand. It is the same as the
Abalone shell but possesses bright colors, Blues, Greens, Pinks, Yellows etc. To export
these shells from New Zealand one must obtain a license and this is also required to own
or keep these shells.
There are basically 2 grades of paua shell - thin & thick!. There are more but to keep
it simple we will mention these. The thick shells are old large shells Called
"Carvers" and used as the name suggests for carving, Some Shells possibly up to
10 mm thick. The thin shells are generally from the North Island & some upper South
Island areas. They are thinner due to a lack of feed and limestone in the water, whereas
the thicker shells tend to be on or near limestone type deposits. The thin Shells, were
the shells that brought big money several years back from
the Asian Market as they were used for inlay work into wood boxes and the like, really
great looking stuff. These thin shells have a great color but were always looked down upon
by the jewelry trade as being too thin to work with as cabs.
The Jewelry trade has many tricks for the unwary customer. Firstly
"Generally-All" Paua jewelry exported to the USA has been dyed Blue. The reason
is that Americans Like and will buy Blue-rich Royal type Blues! And so you will see
nothing else- sad isn't it. You miss out on all the wonderful colors that the shell really
has to offer. The Shell does not need to be dyed, it saddens me to see it happen, but the
market drives it to be done.
The Basic Commercial process for using this shell is as follows. The shell should not be
worked with water! The water in combination with the shell can produce Chlorine Gas and
you will be poisoned! via the skin and via the lungs. It is best to work the shell dry
with a 60 carborundum wheel and a vacuum unit to take away the dust. This method quickly
removes the white lime like outer coating about 2 mins per shell. After this the shell is
normally placed in a hydrocloric acid to clean away dust and brighten it up to judge for
color and what will be done with it. By holding the shell up to a light you are able to
see through it to see if it is too thin for making into a display shell. The shell is
moved on to cutting up for cabs or you can then dry belt sand the shell 120 then 320 ready
for lacquering as a display shell that you may have seen.
Cab making; The shell is normally sliced flat just above the thick rim. The Rim serves no
purpose as such but can be cut & capped for tooth like jewelry. The inside of the
shell is coated with a Thick Black Epoxy Glue to thicken it up. It is then cut into strips
and then squares ready to be rounded for cabs. Once rounded the cabs are sanded all dry
with 180 and then 320 belts. They are damp sorted for color matching and the bluest
looking are sent into the Blue Dyeing barrel for a week. Once dried and cleaned the shell
cabs are coated with a lacquer "nonyellowing of course!" and set into Jewelry.
For Designer type jewelers I would personally recommend the inside colors of the shell to
be used and these can produce really unique pieces. These can be saw pierced out to your
shape as desired. Easy to use is a diamond
piercing saw easily obtainable from a rock shop. A light sanding and polishing with rough
will produce a high gloss that will last well, particularly if near body oils as these are
soaked up into the shell continually. A simple and easy way of lacquering the shell ready
as cabs or other jewelry items (if you don't want a natural polish that is) is to use
clear nail polish several coatings will produce a long lasting hard wearing finish that is
hard to beat.
The shell is really easy to work with as long as you remember these simple rules;
(1) Don't breathe in the dust, In Simple Terms -The dust has barbs like a fishhook and
will cause serious damage to your lungs. Always wear a mask! and have suction. The same
applies to Abalone Shells also.
(2) Do not work the shell wet to avoid Chlorine Poisoning through the Skin and Lungs and
think about others if they are in a room with you- It is possible to poison them and not
you.The same applies to Abalone Shells also.
(3) Always ask for undyed Shells. Enjoy the natural beauty that the shell has to offer,
not the artificial rubbish as sold by many. A good Guide is if it looks really blue it is
CAN YOU SAY
Ross tells me it is properly said PAR- wa. He also reports that some Australians say
PA-wa just as some US southerners drop their r's (including me on occasion).
HUNTING IN CALIFORNIA? The new environut law shutting down a great deal of rock
hunting territory is a mass of confusion. The CFMS newsletter says to simply find out who
manages the area of interest to you. If it is the BLM, you can hike in and hunt. If it is
managed by the National Park Service, you can't even touch a grain of sand. Camping and
vehicle questions haven't even been considered yet.
PETRIFIED WOOD CENTERS often reflect the wood origin with a layer of
chalcedony or pumice on the outside. This occured when volcanic ash covered green wood.
The water evaporated and the wood shrank. Then the space between the wood and the cast
from the ash was filled with chalcedony. This makes beautiful pieces of wood.
Quarry Quips via The Garnet
Gemologists have uncovered the worlds largest known emerald cluster, worth about $50
million, after extracting it from what was thought by its owner to be only a large black
rock. Bangkok gemologists spent about a week removing a thick layer of black mica from the
rock before finding a group of 127 medium green emeralds weighing 167 pounds, or 380,000
carats. The owner, who lives in the United Arab Emirates, found the rock while mining in
Madagascar five years ago. The cluster will probably be purchased by a private collector
or a museum
MAN SHOOTS NEIGHBOR WITH MACHETE
The Miami Herald
AND ITS NAME SHALL BE CALLED...
by Diane Dare
SIESC Education Chairman
Mineral names have many derivations. Some are named for places: Franklinite for its
New Jersey locality, Thulite for Thule, an ancient name for Norway. Vesuvianite was found
in volcanic material in Italy. Some are named for people: Willemite for King Willem 1,
Smithsonite for James Smithson, Neptunite for the Roman god of the sea and Selenite for
the moon goddess.
Some names come from chemical composition: Uvanite contains liranium and vanadium. Others
are based on physical properties: Albite from the Latin 'alba' or white, Octahedrite for
its eight (octa-) sided (-hedra) crystals.
Knowing the origin of a mineral's name can be a clue to proper pronunciation. Thus,
Prehnite- named for its Dutch discoverer Colonel von Prehn-is pronounced PRAYN-ite. But
regional dialects or colloquial uses lead to alternative, and often accepted,
interpretations. Remember the song about, "You say to-MAY-to and I say
To-MAH-to"? Aragon, Spain gives its name to Aragonite, which should result in
AR-ah-gon-ite, but is generally said as ah-RAG-on-ite. Fluorite, from the Latin 'fluere',
to flow (because it melts easily) should be FLEW-uh-rite, but
FLAWR-ite and FLUHR-ite are the more usual terms. From the Greek word for heavy, 'barys',
we get Barite, BARE-ite, but we often hear BAY-rite. Similarly, 'hals', Greek for salt,
gives us Halite, HAL-ite, aka HAY-lite or HAIL-ite.
Sometimes the number of syllables is a guide: Topaz is TOE-paz, while Topazolite is
toe-PAZ- uh-lite. But not always: there is Alexandrite-al-eggs-ZAN-drite, and then
So, what about GOETHITE? Named for the German poet, philosopher and amateur mineralogist
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, it should be GUR-tite, but GAY-thite, GO- thite, and even
GUli-tite refer to the same mineral! Is the iron mineral HEE-muh-tite or HEM-uh-tite? Take
your choice. By tl-ie way, 'tri-' means three, and is pronounced TRY, as in triangle,
tripod, triclinic and trilobite (not TRILL-uh-bite).
In researching this, I learned my little green Anapaite is named for its Russian locality
of Anapa and I have been saying it wrong: it's uh-NAP-uh-ite.
And on that note, have a gneiss-NICE-day!
REFERENCES: various dictionaries and pronunciation guides
Via SIES CLUB NEWS September, 1997
UGHS!! FROM THE NET
¨ I have rabbits in my vegetable garden. Dern, I cannot stand hares in my food.
¨ Did you hear about the mouse lifeguard? He gives mouse-to-mouse resuscitation.
¨ The very bad writer received the phew-litzer prize.
¨ A young rooster found an orange in his mother's nest. Wow! "Lookit the orange
¨ There were two beggars on the corner. One approached everyone who came by. The other
only approached a few of the passersby. The first asked the second why he didn't ask
The second replied that many of the people had been by him before and he believed in
all his begs in one ask-it.
AFMS CREDIT CARD
The AFMS Credit Card Program has been unilaterally cancelled by the issuer, MBNA.
Your use of this card will no longer help the AFMS program. This action was taken without
notice to our President. Those who have the card received notice in very fine print on
their monthly statement. There is some individual movement to cancel the card since they
are no longer of value to our program.
GOT A RED STAR?
YOU'RE GONE - UNLESS
There are several names on the Newsletter mailing list that we have no records for, We
have not been able to verify with any club or federation officer as club officers who
should receive the Newsletter.
If your mailing label has a red star on it this is the last issue you will receive unless
you can convince us that you are entitled to receive this newsletter. IF you believe you
should continue to receive the Newsletter, please advise by return mail, immediately.
Write to the AFMS Central Office The manager is Dan Mclennan, PO box 26523, Oklahoma City,
OK 73126-0523 (405) 682-2151.
A.F.M.S. Newsletter is published monthly except July and August by the American
A.F.M.S. Central Office
Dan McLennan, P. O. Box 26523
Oklahoma City, OK 73126-0523
Mel Albright, Rt. 3 Box 8500
Bartlesville, OK 74003
ADDRESS CORRECTIONS AND CHANGES
Address maintenance and mail labeling are the responsibility of the AFMS Central Office.
changes and questions should be sent there. The President and the Bulletin Editor of each
member club should receive the Newsletter. All others may subscribe. The publisher does
CONTENT - LETTERS
EDITORIAL COMMENTS - SUBMISSIONS
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