AMERICAN FEDERATION OF MINERALOGICAL SOCIETIES
Volume 56, Number 6
IN THIS ISSUE
from Keri Dearborn, Del Air Rockhounds
From across the country and California, unique and wonderful displays are coming to the AFMS/CFMS show this June 5-8 in Ventura, California. The Seaside Gemboree will offer a walk-in display of fluorescent minerals hosted by The Fluorescent Mineral Society. The Faceter's Guild will be showing the latest in faceted stones. The Buena Vista Museum will be displaying Miocene marine fossils and revealing new fossils from the matrix throughout the show as they do a demonstration on fossil preparation. See the art of intarsia, pictures made of intricately placed pieces of stone. Intarsia artist Conrad Grundke will be displaying his work and giving a program on intarsia, during the show on Thursday, June 5. There will be jewelry, minerals, gemstones, carvings and silverwork, fossils, meteorites, dinosaurs and more.
We would love to have you display either in competition or as a noncompetitive guest. Please consider displaying at the AFMS/CFMS show?
Please note: Previous copies of the "Guest Display Entry Form" erroneously stated that there was a $15 fee for the use of provided display cases. There is NO RENTAL FEE for noncompetitive Guests to use a provided display case. The number of these cases is limited and they will be made available on a first come basis.
To display, please contact Display Chairperson Keri Dearborn at GemboreeDisplay@aol.com or (818) 883-5253. Display applications are also available on the CFMS website at www.cfmsinc.org/forms03/form.htm (please note that the zip code to mail display forms to is 91364).
from Bill Buckner, AFMS Safety Chair
Hello, I'm Bill Buckner. Last fall I was asked if I would take the Safety Chair spot for the Federation. I replied that I would. Through my moving and the loss of my address by several persons, I have just received information on where I am to send the safety articles.
This month let's think about safety in general, not just about the lapidary arts.
The highest number of accidents in general happen in homes or places of business. More people are in automobile wrecks close to home than those that happen over a hundred miles away.
A lot of accidents happen because we are distracted. Distraction comes when we spill hot coffee on our bodies as we drive. They also come when we eat and drive, shave and drive, look at scenery and drive, talk on cell phones and drive, and about a hundred other things.
Not only are we distracted in our cars, but also at home and in our own yards. We may even be distracted and miss seeing a step down on the street. As a result we may fall and get hurt.
We may use ladders and not set them where they are safe and get a fall. We may have poor balance and try to walk on uneven ground and get a fall. As a little boy responded to his dad's question, "Son, why do you keep falling out of bed?" His response was, "I don't know Daddy, maybe I didn't get in the bed far enough."
Some of us must take medication. We may take too much or too little unless we have a good system of remembering what we are supposed to be taking.
These few paragraphs should help us to decide to be careful at all times, especially when we are at home, close to home, or at work.
Be safe, do good work, and enjoy life.
from Ron Carman, AFMS President
As I write this at the end of March, I have just returned from another good show - this time at Corpus Christi, where their club always makes me feel welcome. The weekend started out cold and wet, but Sunday it warmed up, and as usual the weather was great on Monday - just in time to return to work! Typical Springtime in Texas!
With the advent of warmer weather we all begin to think about another field trip season and the fun we can have getting outside with our fellow rockhounds looking for more and more goodies to add to the already over-stuffed shelves in our houses or garages (I know this fact all too well)! But before we dash madly out seeking the elusive mother lodes, let's all consider a very important aspect of every trip, that of safety. By its nature, our hobby has its hazards, not only in the field, but also at home or in our workshops where we often have equipment with moving parts and possible spills of water, oil, or other sloppy stuff. We may talk about the risks of being on field trips, where we may encounter rockslides, pits, wildlife and other hazards, but don't forget about safety indoors. Equipment with saws, grind wheels, and other items run by electric motors should be periodically checked to ensure everything is intact and there is no danger of electric shock or fire. We should also see that all our equipment is in good condition and ready to use, whether we are in the shop or in the field. I think we all know the importance of taking care of our gear.
Each issue of the AFMS and regional federation newsletters usually has a safety message from the appropriate safety chairman. I have heard that these articles are popular and widely read, and I encourage everyone to read these safety tips. Often the chairpersons can think of some item that we might overlook and bring it to our attention. Likewise, if there is anything you think of or may have experienced that you believe is worth mentioning, be sure and bring it up to your safety chairman. It may well be worth putting in print for everyone's benefit.
Last but not least, by the time you read this article there will only be about a month to the AFMS show in Ventura, California. I hope to see you there and until then, let's all have a safe trip and safe year!
from Dee Holland, AFMS Endowment Chair
Have you purchased your tickets yet for the AFMS Endowment Raffles? What are you waiting for? The drawing will be held during the AFMS / CFMS Convention in Ventura, California during the first weekend in June.
We now have the following prizes:
1.5k clear beryl mounted in 14k gold pendant
Apache picture rhyloite pendant in a wire wrapped mounting
Channework flower pendant
An intarsia pendant
5-strand turquoise nugget Indian style necklace with earrings.
Pictures of most of the items have been in prior issues of this Newsletter and are also on the AFMS website <www.amfed.org>. Tickets for these items are $5 each or 5 for $20.
In addition, we are holding a separate raffle for a commemorative Lewis & Clark Dutch Oven. Dutch Oven tickets are $1 each or 6 for $5. (The winner of the Dutch Oven will be responsible for the cost of shipping.) All tickets can be purchased by sending your check, payable to "AFMS Endowment Fund" along with a stamped, self-addressed envelope to me at:
Be sure to indicate how many tickets and for which part of the raffle you are requesting tickets. All ticket requests MUST be received by May 30. You may of course also purchase tickets in person at the show in Ventura.
Funds realized from the Endowment Raffle are deposited in secure investments and only the interest from these investments are tapped. AFMS programs which benefit our clubs and members have been helped with funds generated from the Endowment. Slide program duplication, supplies to the regional federations and our junior activities are but three of the programs which have received funding in recent years.
Thanks for your help. YOU might just have that winning ticket!
By Jim Brace-Thompson, Junior Activities Chair
As the fifth in my series of columns proposing a merit badge set of activities for junior members enrolled in the AFMS Future Rockhounds of America program, I turn this month to a topic that's near-and-dear to my own heart: fossil collecting! To me, the thrill of fossil collecting is the science fiction aspect. With the tap of a hammer, shale splits apart, revealing strange creatures long extinct that transport you to a whole different world inhabited by alien beings. Paleontology also offers amateurs a real opportunity to make a contribution to science: time and again, newspapers and magazines report about a fossil, new to science, discovered by kids in a quarry. Significant new specimens are sometimes named after their discoverer, offering a chance at a humble bit of immortality.
As a start in helping kids learn about fossils and paleontology, get your junior members a book. A good, basic (and inexpensive) guidebook that nearly everyone starts with is Rhodes, Zim, and Shaffer's Fossils: A Guide to Prehistoric Life, of the Golden Guide series. You can sometimes get guidebooks like these at a discount if ordering in bulk and if your club has a nonprofit, educational tax ID number and you let the publisher or distributor know you're purchasing for educational purposes. With a resource like this at hand, you're ready to lead kids into any number of activities; for instance:
Per usual, I welcome comments on the various merit badge ideas and activities I've been describing these past few months (email me at email@example.com) as well as ideas of your own. I'm especially interested in learning about activities you've "kid tested" and that have proven effective not only for learning but also-as always-for having fun!
from Bonnie Glismann
Only two clubs sent information about honorees this month. Considering that there are over 500 clubs in the seven Regional Federations, and that each is eligible to send in the name of one person (or couple) that they wish to recognize, these are pretty slim pickins this month.
Come on clubs. Select a person (or couple) that you feel is important to your club, then tell us about why that person or couple is important. Send your selection to your regional AFMS Club Rockhound of the Year Chairperson and we'll publish the information here in the AFMS Newsletter. What a great way to say "thank you" for all those special things your honoree does for your club!
Whittier Gem & Mineral Society is pleased to to honor Bill and Isabella Burns. Bill and Isabella have been a valuable part of the Whittier Gem & Mineral Society for a very long time (40 years for Izzy and 53 years for Bill!). They have both been President (at separate times) and have held or been a part of virtually all committee chairmanships. We rely on them for assistance with the annual gem show, programs and good advise. The membership of the Whittier Gem & Mineral Society wish for them to know that they are much appreciated for their friendship, hard work, and commitment to our Club.
Submitted by Jay Valle, Treasurer and Editor.
Rocky Mountain Federation
The Stillwater Mineral and Gem Society of Oklahoma would like to nominate Dan and Ruby Lingelbach as AFMS Rockhounds of the year for 2003. Dan has been a recent AFMS President while Ruby was a recent RMFMS President. Both have held many administrative positions in the Stillwater club. At present, Dan is serving as treasurer while Ruby is Editor of the "Rockhound Gazette". Ruby has received many awards for her articles and poems. Both Dan and Ruby have won trophies for their many show cases and slide programs. Both are on the Education Team and are available for talks to scouts, bird watchers, and other interested groups. They participate and support all areas of our craft and hobby. They are ready at a moment's notice to help with whatever needs to be done, especially at a recent Payne County Fair Booth. SM&GS is very fortunate to have such dedicated members as Dan and Ruby Lingelbach.
Submitted by Wilma Ramming, President of SM&GS
from Barbara Fenstermacher, AFMS Public Relations Chairman
The 2002 educational summer program, "Reading on Rocks," opened an area of learning far beyond what was originally planned. Donald Baumgartner, a member of the The Badger Lapidary & Geological Society in Monroe, Wisconsin, took time away from his Environmental Protection Agency job to present hands-on fossil programs for children of all ages at western and southwestern Chicago public libraries.
The two-hour interactive program was received by 250 children from second to eighth grades at eight libraries. Donald explained, "Each program started with a lecture on types of rocks and an overview of fossils, followed by how fossils are formed, where to find fossils, safety precautions during hunting, types of preservation, the fossils of Illinois, and even questions on the Jurassic Park movies. Children were quizzed about what they learned and given free fossils as rewards. Each program concluded with hands-on activities such as searching beach sands for shark teeth, polishing amber, opening plaster jackets for real dinosaur bones, examining fossiliferous limestone, and working on fossil puzzles. The children really enjoyed this action-packed program and all took home fossil treasures to enjoy."
Donald's educational efforts and popularity did not go unnoticed by the public education system. The following September, he was invited by the Tate Woods School in Lisle, Illinois to present a day-long fossil program to 150 second-grade children, a support for the geology emphasis in their curriculum. The "World of Fossils and Prehistoric Creatures" program was repeated six times and the response was equally enthusiastic.
"This program dovetails well with our elementary school's curriculum at present," said the school's librarian. "Giving children practical experience in paleontology makes the lessons about fossils sink in." Donald's fossil program presented the students with a simulation of what real-life fossil collectors and dinosaur hunters do. Donald, who quickly became known throughout the school that day as the "Fossil Man," used actual fossils from Illinois and the world to tell the story of life of our historic past. Afterwards, students were quizzed about what they had learned and given free fossils as rewards.
What went into these programs? How did Donald prepare and present? He replied to my questions and we can all take note of how some of these positive results can be achieved.
"My past year's programs have been from 1-2 hours in duration. I try to keep the classes of kids down to some 25-30 students, so that all have time to cover the activity stations. As a current college instructor (biology courses at Harper Junior College in Palatine) and science researcher (entomologist by training), I designed this course to entice children's interest in fossils, while also making a little money on the side to support my fossil hobby addiction. Knowing that kids get bored easily, but also like taking home anything free, I have engineered my programs to be fast paced and rewarding. I do charge for my services and for materials. Free fossils are provided as rewards for correct answers to questions on fossils in general and dinosaurs in particular. These fossils are just seconds and spares from my own field collecting - stuff not that good to keep but cherished by kids. I purchase the other materials such as Columbian copal, small dino bones, and Moroccan shark teeth, either through e-bay or directly from a couple of suppliers when the price is right. All demonstration fossils are from my own personal collection - unusual and showy stuff. Through the program I also ask questions from all three Jurassic Park movies, as kids can really relate to these movies. I also use toy dinos, both old and new, quizzing the kids. They really have enjoyed my programs. Obviously, the key to this action packed program is excellent advanced planning and thorough preparation (set-up). Yes, the program is active and fast. I have run these by myself, but I usually ask for volunteer help from librarian assistants, or from school assistants. After a short orientation for the assistants, they are quite capable at manning some of the fossil activity stations."
Input for this article: "Two Hundred Second Grade Students Mystified by Fossils" submitted by Donald Baumgartner, The Badger Diggins, January 2003, Katherine Fager, editor. Photos of the activity centers are posted on the Tate Woods School website:
Donald can be contacted at: 120 South Walnut Street, Palatine, Illinois 60067, (847/359-5767). E-mail: <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
from Shirley Leeson, Historian
Here is the compendium of the honorary and student recipients of AFMS Scholarship Foundation awards for the Midwest Federation.
1972 DR. C. BERTRAND SCHULTZ
1973 STUART STRUEVER
1974 DR. PAUL EDWIN POTTER
1975 DR. CLAYTON H. JOHNSON
1976 DR. PAUL BRIAN MOORE
1977 DR. FRITIOF M. FRYXELL
1978 DR. DONALD R. PEACOR
1979 DR. DWAYNE D. STONE
1980 DR. THOMPSON MYLAN STOUT
1981 DR. BENJAMIN MOULTON
1982 DR. KATHERINE G. NELSON
1983 DR. TIBOR ZOLTAI
1984 ROGER PABIAN
1985 DR. GEORGE RAPP, Jr.
1986 DR. DUNCAN J. McGREGOR
1987 JEAN PETERMAN KEMP ZIMMER
1988 DR. GENE L. LaBERGE
1989 DR. RICHARD H. LEFEBVRE
1990 RUSSELL & DORIS KEMP
1991 TERRY E. HUIZING
1992 DIANE DARE
1993 STANLEY J. DYL, II
1994 DR. JOHN D. GRACE
1995 JUNE CULP ZEITNER
1996 CALVIN & HARRIET GEORGE
1997 JEAN REYNOLDS
1998 FLORENCE B. HILL
1999 DR. ERNEST H. CARLSON
2000 DR. KEVIN C. COLE
from George Loud, AFMS Conservation & Legislation Chair
April 1, 2003
We are fortunate in the Washington DC area to have at least 7 active gem and mineral clubs. I am a member of 5, most of which I joined so that I could participate in the field trips which they sponsor. Currently, almost all of the limestone, traprock and serpentine quarries in Maryland and Virginia are willing to open their quarries to club sponsored field trips. Now, when I can find the time to collect, I am faced with the happy dilemma of choosing from among 2 or 3 field trips scheduled by various local clubs for the same date.
As recently as 6 or 7 years ago the situation was far different. For a period of 10 years or more few, if any, local quarries would permit collecting by organized clubs or otherwise. Unfortunately, many of the newcomers to our clubs don't remember the many years during which such collecting opportunities were not locally available. Notwithstanding repeated requests from quarry personnel to stay away from high walls, it seems that on every trip I see one or more collectors violating this universal rule. I also know of one incident where a club member sneaked into a quarry, was caught and was summarily ejected, only to show up at that same quarry for a club trip the next morning. It reminds me of the Pogo cartoon where Pogo announces that "we have met the enemy and it is us."
YOU CAN HELP
Perhaps you have read that the Maine Geological Survey has launched a fund-raising drive to purchase the Newry Mines located in the Oxford Hills of Western Maine, for use as a permanent recreational mineral collecting park. I have made a donation and I urge you to do the same. Your donation should be sent by check payable to
"Newry Mineral Park" and mailed to:
Those of you who subscribe Rock & Gem may recall an article in the November 2, 2002 issue entitled: "Saving Historical Mining Artifacts" and subtitled: "The Arizona Mining and Mineral Museum Amasses A Fascinating Collection" by Kathleen Connell. The article describes the museum's collections and the work of volunteers in helping to restore various items of mining equipment. The museum is located at 1502 West Washington Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona. I have not yet visited the museum but would love to do so. We have now received a request from Lois Splendoria of the Mineralogical Society of Arizona in Phoenix, requesting letters to members of the Arizona State Senate serving on the "Joint Subcommittee on Appropriations for Education." You may help support continued funding for the museum by urging the state Senators to support the House proposal to Include funds for the museum in the 2003-2004 and 2004-2005 budgets. I suggest e-mails to the following members serving on the "State Joint Subcommittee for Appropriations for Education".
from Bill Smith, International Relations Chair
The Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology
During our visit with friends in Devon, Alberta, Canada we had the opportunity to spend a day touring the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Paleontology located near Drumheller.
The museum is situated within the spectacular badlands of the Red Deer Valley and is a major research and exhibition center and one of the largest paleontological museums in the world. The facility encompasses 11,200 square meters, draws hundreds of thousands of people each yearand at least three hours should be allowed for the visit. Our six-hour stay was not long enough for me to see all exhibits.
This is one place where a person can take a journey through the corridors of time. World-renowned exhibits let a person experience 4.5 billion years of the Earth's history. From the development of the planet and the first forms of life - to the emergence of dinosaurs, mammals and the living world today. Discover the drama written in the rocks as reveled by fossilized bones, shells and plants. It tells a fascinating story of birth and death, struggle and survival. Meet the creatures that ruled the Earth for more than 150 million years. It is the world's largest exhibit of complete dinosaur skeletons.
As far as I know, there is nothing like it anywhere else in the world. A must place to see if you plan to visit our neighbors to the North.
from Marty Hart and Jim Hurlbut
They've been a long time coming, but we are pleased to announce that you can now obtain the latest AFMS Uniform Rules with the click of a mouse.
The file is posted in pdf format and you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to obtain the rules. Acrobat Reader is a free program found on most computers...or you can download it from Adobe (www.Adobe.com) at no charge. All 99 pages of the rules book are there and take only a few seconds to download, even with a "dial-up" connection. Once downloaded onto your computer you can print out the rules with ease.
To obtain your copy, visit the AFMS website <www.amfed.org/rules/rules.htm>. If you don't have access to the internet or just wish to purchase either the entire rules set or 2003 updates, contact your regional federation supplies chairperson. The cost is nominal.
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