- Elbaite Tourmaline
- Manoel Mutuca Mine, Minas Gerais, Brazil
- Large Cabinet, 18.5 x 3.4 x 2.8 cm
- Ex. Jack Halpern; Dr. Peter Bancroft
This crystal is a stunning historic piece from one of the most famous gem mines of the time, the "Mutuca/Mutuba" indicolite mine, which is still infamous today in gemstone and jewelry circles in Idar-Oberstein and in Brazil for the cut gems of the era. This is a terminated, unrepaired, deep blue indicolite from the old days of Brazilian gem crystal mining, when very little went to collectors and nearly all of it was cut It has no damage, nor any repairs or restorations. It is an unexpected survivor from a time when nearly everything like this was cut into pieces. People in the gem trade that I showed this to, to verify, confirmed the location and suggested a date of mining prior to 1960. This was brought up by Peter Bancroft on one of his trips in 1971, and kept by him for some years in his own collection before selling it to Jack Halpern (along with another tourmaline we're deaccessioning for him). What is amazing about this tourmaline is not only the uniformity of color and the saturation, but that it backlights so easily. It masses 314 grams. Comes with custom lucite base for display. Price on Request. For decades, this has been on display as one of the centerpieces and largest crystals in Jack's famous "Tourmaline Row" showcase, featuring a rising and falling series of tourmaline crystals on display (see photo). But, this is the first time since it came out of the ground, that it has now been properly cleaned!