Silver (found prior to 1908)
Wolverine Mine, Wolverine, Houghton Co., Michigan, USA
Miniature, 4.6 x 2.9 x 1.6 cm
Ex. Howard Belsky
Here is a well-crystallized and very aesthetic Silver specimen from the famous Copper Country of Michigan, especially for the drama and style as a full miniature sized specimen. It is one of the few silver miniatures form Michigan I would say has enough importance, and style, to be competitive in exhibits for the species as a silver miniature (instead of going with a Kongsberg or German piece). This beautiful, arborescent cluster is superbly composed of numerous, well formed, elongate and arborescent Silver crystals in roughly divergent growth. The crystals branch out as elongate, curving and slightly twisted octahedral crystals that display a handsome patina in places and a bright metallic silvery luster in other areas. The shallow arching Silvers vary in length from less than 1 up to 2.5 cm in length. It is very nicely composed miniature with a mass of 60.29 gram (2.13 oz). Ex. Howard Belsky collection (Howard was a wonderful dealer and collector out of Brooklyn who passed away too young, and the collection sat undisturbed for a few decades before selling a few years back). Interestingly, Howard obtained a suite of old classic specimens with similar labels as you see glued to the back of this one, from another New York area collector. He left notes that he found that these pieces were all sold in a single mineral and crystal auction in the New York area, circa 1908. Sadly, I do not have more details, but all the species were classics of the 1900s, as is this. According to The Wolverine Mine was started as a small scale operation in 1882 and ceased in 1884. It was reorganized as the Wolverine Copper Mining Company in 1889 and work began in 1890. The mine was absorbed by the Mohawk Mining Company in 1923 and closed permanently in 1925.