Wednesday, August 26, 2009

More on Manham

CERUSSITE CRYSTALS (MICRO) self collected at Manhan Lead mine dumps, Loudville, MA

Our immediate past post regarding my solitary hour long stop at the Manhan dumps attracted more readers than any previous Mineral Bliss post. Depending upon when read, its content varied. That's because we shortened the original post by cutting all photographic and editorial reference relating to two finds: One was a micro-glob I'd surmised was pink cerussite, the other possible anglesite.

An email from the Editorial Board at Mindat led to my decision regarding these cuts. They were in touch quite quickly to inform me: "Your photo may not be the mineral you said it was." Prompting that quick response, perhaps, was that I'd credited a visual resemblance to photos that were posted on Mindat as the primary source of my identification, noting as well (thankfully) that these identifications were tentative. Mindat's position regarding the "anglesite" was it looked "more like growth-inhibited quartz." Regarding the "cerussite," the editors stated: "It doesn't look like cerussite at all."

I returned to my microscope and box of Manhan rocks and very quickly determined that regardless of issues relating to my "anglesite" identification, Mindat was correct about the cerussite. Within minutes, it became obvious that despite the visual resemblance of my photo to the one that had been pictured at Mindat, the pink glob wasn't cerussite. When poked with a hardness pick, it quickly disintegrated into micro-particles that more suggested an organic substance.

But alas, within a few seconds, I spotted on the same rock a vug in which a sparkle demonstrated renewed promise. After placing the rock under my scope, nearly half an hour of moving and manipulating the rock as well as two fiber optic lights were necessary before the angle I was looking for could be captured. The resulting photo is beneath this post's title, and my confidence level is quite high that no one will question the cerussite identification. I feel just as confident that within a period of time I'll uncover from within my knapsack a rock bearing a no questions asked genre of anglesite as well.

No comments:

Post a Comment