Walnut Hill Pegmatite Prospect, Huntington, Hampshire Co., Massachusetts, USA
Cabinet, 14.2 x 9.2 x 3.0 cm
Ex. Ken Hollmann
This is the CRYSTAL TYPE LOCALITY for spodumene, apparently. A LARGE, 660-gram single, sharply terminated crystal of spodumene from this classic old locality circa mid-1800s! They were considered very important at the time (remember, gem pink kunzite had NOT yet been found in California, Brazil, or Afghanistan), and these crystals were considered highly important and sold or traded into all major museums. Owning one of these would be a goal to assemble any major collection of the time, of important US minerals. Today, they are not worth their weight in gold any more (660 grams...ouch!), but they still are important historical pieces. This location was first documented by Edward Hitchcock in 1833 (Report on the Geology, Mineralogy, Botany and Zoology of Massachusetts), and the first location to yield crystallography on the species (1879). The quarry was last operated by B. K Emerson of Amherst College, and Frank Nason (Nasonite) operated the location in 1885. This is when the majority of the old specimens were recovered. For the size of this crystal, this is really good! They generally get a little more "aesthetically challenged" with size. This is one of the best I have seen, and although color-challenged, it is a very important historical specimen nonetheless, and a superb example from this now defunct pegmatite. Ex. Ken Hollman Collection. Thanks to Jim Chenard for this footnote: A funny note on this area was with regards to the early Professor Emerson, who wrote the Mineralogical Lexicon of Hampshire, Hampden Counties in Mass. His journal well documents the Walnut Hill location, and always used taverns as landmarks. His writing got worse during the day, and he would frequently come back to Amherst on foot, since he would forget where his horse was. This is an old location!