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New Mexico Mineral Symposium — Abstracts

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New Finds from the Michigan Copper Country

Tom Rosemeyer

P. O. Box 369, Magdalena, NM, 87825,

Mineral collecting in the Michigan Copper Country continues but at a slower pace than a few years ago. New, small finds are still being made but the slower pace is due to a number of reasons. The main reason is that the digging of mine dumps (poor rock piles) for specimens by younger people, that I called “mineral seekers,” has almost come to a stand still. This is due to the fact that they could not collect enough specimens for resale to keep the bill collectors at bay.

On the uphill side is that many of the mine dumps that were once a landmark in Copper Country are slowly disappearing. This is due to increased road construction and repair along with new haul roads for an expanded logging industry. The good side is that many specimens are recovered during the crushing of their mine dump, but on the down side, once the dump is crushed it is gone for good.

But it is not that gloomy yet, there were a number of isolated finds from micro to cabinet size copper and silver specimens. A number of beautiful datolite nodules have also been found in the last few years. One of the most exciting finds has been the recovery of exotic and rare micro crystals of manganese silicates from the long-abandoned Manganese mine Near Copper Harbor. Beautiful micro crystals of macfallite (type locality), orientite, and tangeite along with the common mangnese oxides were recovered from logging when the mine dump was used for logging road repair.

Copper Country is home to the Yoopers and is a place where you can come and leave your cell phone and computer behind and enjoy like in another world.

pp. 17

35th Annual New Mexico Mineral Symposium
November 8-9, 2014, Socorro, NM