Arkansas Rockhound News - the Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral


Arkansas Rockhound News - the Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral
“By all these lovely tokens September days are here,
With summer’s best of weather And autumn’s best of cheer.”
~ Helen Hunt Jackson
Arkansas Rockhound News
Arkansas Rockhound News
Official Newsletter of the Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral and
Geology Society (CAGMAGS)
September 2014
Upcoming Club Events
September 13
Field Trip to UALR
UALR Campus
Science Lab Building
Room 165
10:00 a.m.
(see page 2 for map)
O N!
ING V Central A Show
C d
n An n u
The 4 , Jewelry th & 5 , 20
Gem tober 4
Display case viewing
Scholarship presentations
Tour of research labs
Tour of rock lab
September 23
Next Club Meeting
Terry Library
6:30 p.m.
Angela Chandler
Arkansas Geological Survey
October 4 – 5
CAGMAGS Mineral Show
Jacksonville, Arkansas
9 am – 5 pm
Jacksonville Community Center
5 Municipal Drive
(Hwy 67/167 Exit 9 Main St.)
Contact: Tom Sharp
(501) 379-8653
[email protected]
Sarah Dodson helping to
repair display cases for the show.
Thanks to everyone who helped on show workshop day! FREE ADMISSION
Minerals – Fossils – Beads
Lapidary Material – Jewelry
Kid Dig – Door Prizes
See page 6 and 7
Remembering Chris Wright
Stephanie shares a short tribute to this legend in the world of mineralogy.
page 3
Arkansas Rockhound News
September 2014
President’s Message
Mike Austen, CAGMAGS President
It is hot outside. In
case you have not gotten
out lately, it is really
hot. The August field trip
to Cove Creek was in nice
cool water. The September trip will be a cool one
too. We will go to UALR
to have an indoor field
trip. They will treat us to a
trip through the geology department. We will see
the classrooms, the equipment shop, the displays
that were provided by our club members, and meet
some of the students. You might even get a cookie
if you behave yourself. The open house will be September 13th at 10 AM at the science building next
to the library. Parking will be in the library parking
lot. This is a great chance for our club to become
familiar with the UALR geology department. Plan
on being there.
- Mike
Can that really be TRUE???
Do you know what gives tofu its firmness?
The answer… GYPSUM! Calcium sulfate (gypsum) is the traditional and most
widely used coagulant to produce Chinese-style tofu. Some manufacturers even
use this to advertise tofu as a good source of calcium!
So… does that mean I can use an extra chunk of drywall to firm up my too soft
tofu? Better that than a prized Gypsum Rose!
Arkansas Rockhound News
September 2014
Remembering Chris Wright
Hello fellow rockhounds! I just wanted to
give a little space for Chris Wright, the owner
of Wright’s Rock Shop in Hot Springs, who
passed away on January 8, 2014.
He was born in Texas on April 25, 1946.
He graduated from high school in Hot
Springs in 1967. He claimed to have gotten
his first specimen when he was 9 months old.
It was from his godfather-uncle who was a pit
supervisor at the Clifton/Morenci mines in
Arizona. In 1947, he gave him a piece of
chrysocolla that he kept throughout his life.
In 1968, he earned a BS in Geology, Ecology,
Biology and History. He earned a Masters
Degree in 1969 in Botany, Zoology and Geology at the University of Arkansas. From
1970-1971 he did work in Ecology at the
University of Arkansas.
When he was very young Chris wanted to be a mineral dealer and at the age of
14 he purchased the entire stock of a local rock shop. He previously had purchases
of large mineral lots and would sell them when his family went on vacations. In
1967 he rented a building to sell his specimens and had a mail order business. In
1970 Wright’s Rock Shop officially opened. He was the author of two books and
many articles. He also lectured and was frequently a guest on “Good Morning Arkansas”.
He was fortunate to have his family’s help with the shop to be able to pursue his
ambitions. He had an extensive personal collection but has sold it off over the years.
I can remember going to the shop when I was very young and would want to spend
hours looking at all the cool specimens. I never got to purchase a lot but it was always a place to stop on my rock trips.
Arkansas Rockhound News
September 2014
CAGMAGS Meeting Minutes for August 2014
The meeting was called to order at 6:30 on Monday, August 25, by President Mike Austen. There were no visitors or new members.
The next meeting will be on the regular 4th Tuesday, September 23 at 6:30 at Terry Library. The room is reserved for the 4th Tuesday through November.
Upcoming area events:
September 6-7
October 4-5
October 10-12
October 18
October 18-19
October 25-26
Siloam Springs, AR
OUR SHOW Jacksonville, AR
Mt. Ida, AR
Tulsa, OK club swap
Des Moines, Iowa Midwest Fed. Show (our federation)
Jacksonville, AR Jewelry and Bead Show
Sept 13 at UALR Science Lab Building. See “new field trip”
Old business:
Mike again asked for volunteers to man a club table for us at the Mt. Ida Show. Still
no volunteers.
New Business:
Stephanie told about the “Caroling in the Caverns”, which is at Blanchard Caverns
during the holidays. Cost of $27 includes the Dripstone Trail tour. Contact Stephanie
if you’re interested, and she’ll handle the reservations.
UALR – The display of our loaned Arkansas minerals is up and ready to view. See
more under “new field trip”
Sec/Treas – reports as written and on table were accepted
Library – New Rock and Gem, and new Mineralogical Record. Also a new book, and
a DVD, about the Tucson Show.
Old Field Trip – the trip was to Cove Creek for Pyrite. Four attended.
New Field Trip – The field trip will be to UALR to see the display of Arkansas
Minerals on loan from our own club members, hear presentations from our field
camp scholarship winners, tour the labs, visit with faculty, and enjoy light
refreshments. Meet in the Science Lab Building at 10:00. Parking is available
in the Library parking lot.
Next Program – Angela Chandler from the Arkansas Geological Survey
Show Report – Mike has put ads in Rock and Gem, and has contacted the local
newspapers and TV stations. The cards and fliers are printed, and the food vendor is arranged for. People are needed to do display boxes and to do demonstrations. Please take fliers if you are traveling.
Show and Tell:
Several members attended the recent Mountain Home show and reported that it was a
good one. The Dodsons, Rigsbys, Stephanie, Barbara, and possibly others went.
Birthday people for August:
Stephanie Blandin, Lenora Murray, and Dave Murray
(continued on page 5)
Arkansas Rockhound News
September 2014
(continued from page 4)
The program was on the Rush mining district, by Bill Prior of the Arkansas Geological
Survey. Mike Howard (recently retired from there) jokingly pointed out that Bill is
now the oldest geologist there. Bill brought a very nice suite of minerals from the
Rush District, which has been closed to digging since the early 80s as a part of the
Buffalo National River. A couple of mines lie outside the park, but are privately
owned and access is difficult.
There are several zinc/lead districts in Arkansas, and Rush is the best known. There
were more than 12 mines in the district. Smithsonite and sphalerite were the primary
ores, with Rush being best known for the yellow Smithsonite variety “Turkey Fat”.
Other minerals include calcite, quartz, aragonite,dolomite, “dry bone ore”, many colors of smithsonite, and hemimorphite.
They had no machinery; all mining was with hand tools. Mills were specific for either
sphalerite (sulfide) or smithsonite (carbonate). The area was deforested. They used
all the timber for either building or fuel.
This was an excellent program, illustrated with historic photographs of the area’s
mines and mills, as well as historic maps. Nice job, Bill.
Submitted by
Sarah Dodson, Sec/Treas
Club Connection
Featuring a newsletter excerpt from a club somewhere in the United States
This month’s selection is from the September 2014 issue of “Rock Buster News” published
by the Central Pennsylvania Rock and Mineral Club, Inc. in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
EARTHtalk! Lecture Series Sept. 17, 2014
Dr. Lashun Thomas
6:00 pm in the EIT Auditorium at UALR “Moving Toward More Sustainable, Cleaner Water”
FREE! Public Welcome! For more information:
Arkansas Rockhound News
September 2014
The Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral and Geology Society (CAGMAGS) meets on the fourth
Tuesday at the Terry Library, 2015 Napa Valley Drive, in Little Rock at 6:30 PM. Visitors
and pebble pups are always welcome.
by Brad Smith
I'm always on the lookout for
small containers to use for holding those various little parts and
tools we deal with in making jewelry, especially since I'm always
traveling to classes and workshops.
My latest find are some plastic
vials about 15 mm in diameter
and 75 mm long. Best part is they
are free. Three of them are shown
on the right.
The vials are used in hospitals
and doctor's offices to draw blood
samples. They cannot be used
after their expiration date and
must be thrown out. On my last
doctors visit, I asked the nurse if
they had any expired vials. She
tried to give me 400 of them. We
settled on 200.
The ones I have are called "Vacutainers", but there are probably
many other brand names. They
are sterile and made of clear plastic with a rubber stopper and a
paper label all ready to write on. I
find them really handy for small
parts like jump rings, prong settings, small drills, nuts & bolts,
faceted stones, and precious metal filings.
Also shown are some other
handy containers - pill bottles, the
old 35mm film cans, and metal
breath mint boxes.
For more great BenchTips, visit the
BenchTips page at:
Mike Austen
(501) 868-4553
[email protected]
Stephanie Blandin
(501) 590-5760
Sarah Dodson
(501) 223-8372
[email protected]
Field Trip Coordinator
David Hodge
(501) 837-6713
Chris Butterworth
(501) 920-9249
[email protected]
Newsletter Editor
Michael DeAngelis
(501) 569-3542
[email protected]
Show Chairman
Tom Sharp
(501) 379-8653
[email protected]
Ann Austen
(501) 868-4553
[email protected]
Program Chairman
David Dodson
(501) 223-8372
[email protected]
Sunshine Chairman
Barbara Champagne
(501) 258-2576
[email protected]
The flyer for the
is on the next page!
Please print and distribute!
OCTOBER 4th & 5th, 2014
9 AM to 5 PM
Minerals – Fossils – Beads
Lapidary Material – Jewelry
Kid Dig – Door Prizes
Sponsored By
For more information:
Tom Sharp (501) 379-8653 or [email protected]
CAGMAGS website:
Arkansas Rockhound News
September 2014
Arkansas Rockhound News
is the Official Newsletter of the
Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral and Geology Society
The Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral and
Geology Society is dedicated to promoting interest in mineralogy and the related sciences, interest in lapidary and the
related arts; to encourage field trips and
the enjoyment of collecting and preserving minerals as
they occur in nature, and the study of geological formations, especially those of our Natural State of Arkansas. We are a small group of people that enjoy getting
together to share our common interests.
“Old rockhounds never die, they just slowly petrify!”
Arkansas Rockhound News
Official Newsletter of the Central Arkansas Gem, Mineral, and Geology Society (CAGMAGS)
P.O. Box 241188
Little Rock, AR 72223

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