Every summer, for a few days, the quiet town of Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines transforms into a bustling mineral and gem extravaganza. This is the most beautiful major mineral show setting, and attending is a great experience. This year’s show included some excellent minerals, including some great new finds.
I’ve added some excellent yellow stilbites on the website in the new Mali Update. Among the nicest and most distinctive stilbites I’ve ever seen from anywhere, specimens from Diamonkara have beautiful colour and form. These new Mali stilbites are perhaps not yet appreciated for what they are – these are striking, colourful display specimens of a mineral that is often pale and drab.
The annual mineral show at Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines is so different from all others. Sure, we all love the large exciting mineral-filled halls and general mineral mayhem of the large shows, and the hotel shows in Tucson and Denver. But Ste Marie’s character and charm, from the theatre and the tent-lined streets within the show, to the town and the countryside beyond, make this an experience not to be missed.
Beautiful new specimens from Mali, featuring yellow balls of stilbite crystals from Diamonkara, a new find. The Diamonkara workings are in the same general vicinity of the Arrondissement Diako which has produced the now well-known specimens of prehnite and epidote. Also new among these specimens is an exceptionally fine prehnite on epidote.
Nestled in the Val d’Argent, in Alsace, France, the town of Sainte-Marie-aux-Mines hosts one of the world’s largest minerals shows, with character and class unto itself. I’ve added this post to give a glimpse into finds and highlights from Sainte-Marie 2014.