Silver on Calcite
New Nevada Mine, Batopilas, Chihuahua, Mexico
Cabinet, 11.0 x 6.8 x 6.0 cm
Batopilas is justifiably famous for the "herringbone style" silver crystals which have been found there only several times over 120 years of mining. This piece, I am told, probably dates to a big find in the 1980s. It is one of the larger, more dramatic matrix specimens known. The "herringbone" cluster of elongated silver crystals is 7.5 cm long and 5 cm tall. It is one of the most stunningly machinelike, constructed-looking silver habits, and I find it mesmerizing. Technically, all of these elongated crystals are actually spinel-twinned, which gives them the funny shape. This is a significant cabinet specimen for the locality, for Mexico and just for a silver in general. Joe Budd photos.