Burra Burra Mine, Ducktown District, Polk Co., Tennessee, USA
Small Cabinet, 9.9 x 6.0 x 5.0 cm
This is a VERY rare old, historic specimen from a locale that you don't see on the market at all anymore. Perched aesthetically on a silvery, micaceous schist is a doubly-terminated, lustrous and slightly translucent, dark reddish orange garnet crystal, showing great dodecahedron faces, and measuring 3.1 cm in length. Tiny pyrite crystals are present in the schist. There is a possibility that the garnet species may be almandine rather than spessartine. Ex Robert Trimingham collection.
Classic combination piece from a well-known Shengus locality. As a combo, it is very dramatic with a garnet perched in the middle, and all these pegmatite species in association. The 10.3 cm Schorl is striated and lustrous, with a slightly etched termination. On the Schorl is a blood-red, 1.6 cm Almandine (along with smaller ones) that has classic etching, several 2.2 cm Albite crystals, and beautifully formed Muscovite crystals up to 3 cm across. The form and balance of this piece create a very good aesthetic balance. It has a mine-run repair to the schorl at just above the height on the cluster where the albites attach. The crack is miniscule from the front, but does have a slight gap when seen from the rear. This can be fixed in the lab with epoxy fill, but it looks so good from the front that we have elected not to add restoration just for the backside, and the expense that goes with it. So, the piece is an apparent bargain (and looks far more expensive in style!), although this is the reason why.
Russell Garnet mine, Russell, Hampden Co., Massachusetts, USA
Miniature, 5.0 x 3.9 x 3.0 cm
This miniature specimen hosts a superb, 3-cm, sharp and classic trapezohedral crystal on a pedestal of natural matrix. This is a very rare example of the classic "Russel Garnets" found in the late 1800s by two lucky locals (Daniel Clark and FS Johnson). They sold them off, and never revealed the locality: to this day they are simply known as "Russell Garnets" from an un-named pegmatite in the area. Collectors today are still trying to re-locate the exact site and good specimens are mainstays in ANY major museum or East Coast classics collection. This specimen is one of the better examples I have seen for sale, for its good balance and perfect symmetry. It is complete on 3 sides, contacted only on the back face. It has a little attached muscovite matrix, which is rare. At the time they were found, these crystals were all famously buffed or polished by the finders (with shoe polish, I am told), some more and some less. This particular specimen has less of an apparent gloss and buffed smoothness than others I have seen, giving it a more natural look than usual. A favorite in the collection, used in my advertisements.
Thumbnail – Maximum 3.0 cm
Toenail – A “gut feeling” but often overlaps between a large thumbnail and a small miniature
Miniature – Maximum 5.0 cm
Small Cabinet – Maximum 9.4 cm
Cabinet – Maximum 18.0 cm
Large Cabinet – Over 18.0 cm
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