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A thick slab micro crystallized sparkling white alstonite matrix
Bethel Level, Minerva Mine #1, Hardin County, Illinois, USA
Large Cabinet, 23.5 x 21.7 x 7.5 cm
A thick slab of micro-crystallized, sparkling, white alstonite is the matrix for five clusters of scalenohedral, lustrous and translucent, tan colored calcite, to 3.5 cm in length. Some damage to calcite tips is evident but this is tolerated due to the rarity and importance of the specimen as a whole for its rich and fine alstonite crystals that have such unusual luster to them. Mined in the 1940's to 1950's according to his label, and from the Ross Lillie collection. RCL#2173.
A VERY unique assemblage sided aesthetics size significance makes
Bethel Level, Minerva Mine #1, Hardin County, Illinois, USA
Cabinet, 11.7 x 10.5 x 5.4 cm
A VERY unique assemblage, that also has two-sided aesthetics and a size significance that makes it stand out in any collection as an important piece. Benstonite is extremely rare worldwide and the best come from Illinois, I would say. This piece is a wildly different style of attractive and lustrous, deeply-colored benstonite perched to show off. Alstonite is a bonus, here. The shape of this specimen leads to the conclusion that a butterfly twin of calcite was replaced by the gray alstonite. Secondary growth of lustrous and translucent, amber colored benstonite coats large portions of the twinned crystals in an oriented fashion of overgrowth. Rare occurrence: Mined 1950's-1960's and from the Ross Lillie collection. Rcl#2338 (previously ex. Paul Harter and Dan Weinrich). Although not the most expensive thing, this is surely one of the more interesting pieces in the collection. It carries the special yellow tag marked as "museum reserve" which noted pieces under consideration for a deal to the Chicago Field Museum at one time.
This large display specimen showcases superb 5 5 cm long lustrous
Fallowfield Mine, Hexham, Northumberland, England
Small Cabinet, 7.3 x 7.0 x 6.1 cm
This large display specimen showcases a superb, 5.5 cm-long lustrous and translucent, milky-white crystal of witherite perched atop. The termination does exhibit very minor bruising but this looks to me old wear, only, and is hard to see. Along with the specimen comes an old late-1800s century label from the dealership of Boubee, Paris. These English witherites are significant for the species, and such large and isolated crystals are uncommon. As a bonus, this specimen is richly associated with the rare species alstonite, from this co-type locality. This was formerly exchanged out to the (well-noted) Eric Asselborn collection, much of which I also purchased a few years ago.