Thunder Bay amethyst has been known given that the 19th century, and is impressive for its variety-- it occurs in all tones of purple from pale to deep, from warm to cool shades, it is typically more colored by inclusions (most often red, due to consisted of hematite) and occasionally phantoms are likewise found. It is a long journey to the amethyst mines of the Thunder Bay District
Thunder Bay remains in the heart of the amethyst nation. These semi-precious gems are found in quality and amount in Thunder Bay and along the north coast of Lake Superior.
Thunder Bay quartz crystals happen in many colors and shades, from colourless to smoky quartz, and the variety of amethyst occurs in crystals from delicate pale lilac to a deep purple that can approach black.
The lustre of Thunder Bay amethyst ranges substantially from the best of the dazzling, lustrous crystals at the Diamond Willow Mine (a few of which look constantly wet (!)) to crystals that are not bright and can even be fairly dull in lustre.
Thunder Bay Amethyst (trademarked as Auralite 23) was found in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada.
This special crystal has been called by numerous names, including Auralite, Thunder Bay Amethyst, Kindred Spirit Stone, and Super 23. It is, in fact, generally an Amethyst with numerous additions. It is said that Auralite contains up of 23 elements, but lots of consist of a minimum of seventeen: Titanite, Cacoxenite, Lepidocrosite, Ajoite, Hematite (which provides Auralite its red coloring), Magnetite, Pyrite, Goethite, Pyrolusite, Gold, Silver, Platinum, Nickel, Copper, Iron, Limonite, Sphalerite, Covellite, Chalcopyrite, Gialite, Epidote, Bornite and Rutile.
Auralite 23 is a pale to dark royal purple and white crystal with a red-capped suggestion, varying from partly translucent to opaque. Its layered inclusions of multiple colors are frequently muddled together. It can have a waxy texture or a dull shine and is frequently found as points.
Identifying Thunder Bay Amethyst
The history of the amethyst discoveries and production of the past is useful in comprehending area info, particularly for older specimens. it is likewise useful for all specimens where the labelling has been vague. It is so common to see mineral specimen labels with "Thunder Bay, Ontario", and no additional info. Although "Thunder Bay amethyst" has really periodically been found right inside the city limitations, the city of Thunder Bay is not the source of the Thunder Bay amethyst specimens on the contemporary mineral market.
Similarly, it would be a task today to obtain an amethyst specimen excavated in the silver mines of the area prior to the early 20th century. Unless a specimen is really understood to date to the early 20th century or earlier, specimens identified
"Thunder Bay, Ontario" (or, one in some cases sees "Port Arthur, Ontario" on pre-1970 specimens) are more than likely from any of a handful of producing mines and residential or commercial properties-- or potentially even any of a rather large number of potential customers and extra known deposits-- the majority of which remain in McTavish Township, in an area beginning about 50 km northeast of the city of Thunder Bay. Absent particular area info, making use of only "Thunder Bay" on a label should be thought about to refer to the Thunder Bay District.
Thunder Bay Amethyst-- Today and Future
Thunder Bay amethyst is amongst North America's finest and is known by collectors all over the world. These amethysts are contemporary classics for mineral collectors. Because the amethyst-lined vugs of any size naturally have collapsed during their history before anyone has discovered or gathered their contents, exceptional quality specimens will constantly be unusual, difficult to obtain and highly valued.
The Thunder Bay Amethyst Mine, the largest in North America, was discovered by the way throughout the construction of a forest-access road to generate building supplies for the construction of a fire tower. The mine has functioned given that the 1960s, when sales of amethyst landscape and fireplace stones across Canada and the U.S. started
Amethyst has actually been discovered at many localities over a considerable location within the Thunder Bay District (regions approximately 200 km apart) and mining continues today at a few homes. As Frank Melanson (2012) points out, thanks to our winters it is a short mining season, and thanks to the rugged surface, gain access to and access expense is constantly a concern, so it is hard to mine
Ontario amethyst beneficially. And yet, the lure of the amethyst continues to inspire continuous efforts, despite the economic challenges (and not to mention the black flies!). In Frank's words, "for numerous, keeping the mines open was a labour of love."
It is possible to personally collect amethyst in the Thunder Bay District, mostly on a fee-collecting basis, and also at other potential customers and exposures. All of the authors have collected amethyst crystals in the Thunder Bay District. The majority of specific gathering is generally on the dumps, significantly at the Amethyst Mine Panorama, however it is hard to discover collector-quality fine mineral specimens on the dumps. Other gathering is simply a bit more included, as Ian's description communicates!
When amethyst was first come across in the early silver mines of the 19th century, no-one would have anticipated the story of Thunder Bay amethyst as it has unfolded. Thanks to the later vision and pioneering efforts of Gunnar Noyes, Rudy Hartviksen and others, those very first finds of amethyst would result in the discovery of considerable amethyst deposits and the conservation of amazing amethyst specimens that now reside in museums and collections all over the world. It is uncertain the number of Thunder Bay amethyst mining endeavors will be able to continue in the future, but it is likely that great specimens will continue to be found, in really small numbers, relative to the quantity mined. It is also likely that the best amethysts mined by David and Ian Nicklin will, for a long time, be thought about among the finest quality amethysts ever gathered in the Thunder Bay District.
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