Mineral Specimens with Copper|
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3.8 x 2 x 1.5 cm. A superb Copper miniature from the Ojibway Mine in Michigan’s Copper country. Rarely do you find Copper, or any other native metal, so well crystallized as on this piece. Cubic is one of the rarest habits of copper, and this old mine is famous for it - was, rather. A fine miniature, this piece has superb quality cubes on it, impossible to miss and not subtle at all. The cubes range up to .6 cm (average about .35 cm), and they have a beautiful reddish-gold patina that is bright, almost iridescent. A great Copper. Ex. Charlie Key.
3.0 x 2.7 x 2.3 cm and 2.8 x 2.7 x 2.3 cm. Here is a fine thumbnail set consisting of a crystal of Aragonite and a pseudomorph of Copper after Aragonite from the famous locality of Corocoro. These floater specimens are well known from Bolivia for their great form and color, and this set is a great way to illustrate the "before and after" effect which is rare to find for most pseudomorphs, especially from the same locality. These pieces are some of the most well known and highly sought after pseudomorphs around. This set is a very fine example of this material, and it was very difficult to find a pair of these "disco ball" type specimens that matched so well for shape and size. There hasn't been any significant amount of these specimens on the market in approximately 25 years, and they are often only found in old collections.
6.3 x 2.3 x 1.3 cm. Very closely resembling Christmas trees is this aesthetic cluster of parallel growth, spinel twinned, lustrous, copper crystals with variegated patina. The largest of the spinel twins measures 5.0 cm in length. True there are larger groups, rarely available, but for sheer quality and beauty, this specimen is just outstanding. It is one of the most elegant such specimens I have seen, and is a large miniature or small, small cabinet. It has much more style than most, as they tend to be singles and this is a nice triple. Ex. Jason New Collection.
38.0 x 16.0 x 3.5 cm. This fan-spray of finely-crystallized copper weighs in at just about 10 pounds and is very impressive. It is complete-all-around, fully crystallized front, sides, and back. It has Carnegie's collection number as well as several yet older collection numbers attached to the backside. Ex. Andrew Carnegie Collection.
30.0 x 24.8 x 8.1 cm. This is a huge copper specimen with a thick 12-inch crystal perched on a natural pedestal of smaller crystals. It’s a floater, complete-all-around, and with really impressive 3-dimensionality. This crystal has, in its middle, a souvenir of the pre-1900s mining technique of hand-drilling. This impression would have been left by a cold steel drill bar that was hammered through the rock by two strong men, alternating turns while another held a candle. The trick was to aim for the candle's reflection on the polished end, and not to have the hammer slip and hit your buddy holding the bar in place. It was not the easiest of techniques. I find this to be a fascinating specimen. So did the Seaman Museum folks. Yes, technically it is "scarred", but it’s in such an interesting manner that to me this is definitely a museum-style piece. Ex. Seaman Mineralogical Museum Collection.
9.4 x 6.8 x 6.6 cm. This is one of the rarest habits of copper: thick ropey wire copper. The style is characteristic of the Osceola Mine in the late 1800s and early 1900s, and this is an exemplary specimen because it has both robust wires and displays aesthetically overall. It is a solid specimen of copper ingrown with datolite matrix. This is also from a museum collection, though we are unsure where now. It is the finest example of this style that I personally have seen for sale in my time as a dealer over 20 years, though I know of two other great ones which sold over that time (not publicly). In any case, it is certainly as good as you can reasonably expect for the size, and has excellent aesthetics that surely must make it one of the better surviving examples of this style. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
15.6 x 13.8 x 4.3 cm. This specimen features wildly elongated crystals showing the cubic form in some places, and dodecahedral crystals elsewhere. I would swear the central stalk is a single large spinel twin except that it seems too robust, so it is perhaps an elongated copper crystal of "normal" habit, stretched beyond expectation. This was probably found during the heyday here in 1844-1890 according to the Seaman Museum folks. A fanciful and sculptural specimen chosen for the collection for its obvious display qualities. Neal Yedlin traded this from Lou Moyd of the Royal Ontario Museum, in the 1960s or 70s, I am told. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
15.9 x 9.2 x 6.0 cm. An elegant, arborescent crystal cluster just rising up off a well-trimmed matrix - it is rare to find such large crystals in any case (cluster or not), and on matrix even less common. The matrix has epidote and quartz in it, as well as rock. The copper is solidly embedded - this is no frail treelike growth, but a solidly connected cluster. The cluster overall is flattish, mostly about 1 cm thick; though smaller fat crystals poke out in a few places. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
16.2 x 10.5 x 4.0 cm. A visually stunning large specimen with classic old patina to it, and sculptural form. You can see how the huge spinel-twinned crystals shoot off in several directions and act as host for some very complex combinatorial forms of copper crystallization resulting in so-called "arrowheads" crystals that have always been rare and desirable to collectors (I think these are tetrahexahedra modified by other forms). Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
43.0 x 19.2 x 4.0 cm. This huge copper crystal cluster is, as you can see, large and impressive. It is a "fan" style, with elongated branches growing out from a central winding stalk. This is not a flimsy thin copper plate. It is a thick, robust, sculptural, heavy specimen with no fragility at all as with some typical copper fan sprays. It is all the more significant and important as a historic specimen - few of such size and quality have been preserved over time. Both sides are equally displayable and fully crystallized throughout, with minor baryte and minor zones of oxidized green patina scattered within the copper. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
11.6 x 9.5 x 7.1 cm. This specimen is a very hefty cluster of intergrown, thick crystals of myriad habits, and on top sits this perfect, isolated "button" of a crystal. The crystal is sharply tetrahexahedral with a dodecahedral modification, and measures almost 2 cm across. Ex. Wesleyan College and Neal Yedlin Collections.
14.3 x 7.6 x 6.9 cm. A very dramatic piece, totally mesmerizing to me, with a Medusa's crown of elongated spinel-twinned coppers leaping of a matrix of smaller crystals (all very sharp). This piece is 3-dimensional and looks good from any angle and any view. It is a mix of elegant atop a massive base, and the mix works. The piece is unique enough that, according to the Seaman Museum people who saw it, it is likely from this specific mine in the Keweenaw County heartland of copper mining. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
13.3 x 11.2 x 7.5 cm. A very 3-dimensional specimen with great aesthetics from any angle because it resembles a flowing vine with sharp copper crystals shooting off every which way. These crystals measure to 3 cm and are of at least 3 different habits, plus combinations of those habits. I see at least one large twin atop, as well. The branching aesthetics of this piece are really elegant, and it’s a very much more beautiful specimen in person than it appears here. The patina, also, has a bright brassy lustre to it that is highly desirable. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
26.4 x 13.4 x 5.5 cm. This remarkable museum-sized specimen was the pride of the collection, and stands up there with the finest large copper specimens in any museum in the United States as a piece of US history. Even the Seaman Museum, our largest repository of historic and fine copper specimens, has not many pieces with such large cubic crystals and I think not another of this size for the style. This specimen has cubes all over it, a rare form in copper, to 2 cm. It has reticulated clusters of elongate, rectilinear crystals. It has distorted crystals of other habits. It has spinel twins tucked in the body. It is overall a riveting piece with so many different kinds of crystallization. It was in a museum, in fact, for most of the 1900s - donated to the Cranbrook Institute at some point and then traded out by the late Neal Yedlin in the 1970s. I am told that this was the cornerstone of the Yedlin Collection. Probably from the Copper Falls or Phoenix Mine. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
34.0 x 11.3 x 3.2 cm. This is an extremely large and impressive "snake" of intergrown copper crystals obtained by Gene Sensel from Werner Krauss' collection in 1962. Hauck bought the Sensel collection and kept these for himself. They are probably very old specimens, but there is no way to be sure how old or exactly which mine they came from. They are complete on both sides and all-around; it’s very hefty and impressive in person. For the size, this is an extremely elegant specimen too, with none of the uusual matrixy-ugly-included portions common in so many large coppers. Ex. Richard Hauck Collection.
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