As I have written before, one thing that Chrissy and I enjoy about the Diamond
Hill Quartz Mine is that just about every time we go there to collect, we end up bringing home
something new or different. Our last several trips to the mine this month have been no exception
as you will see below.
Amethyst is the prize of Diamond Hill as it is, arguable, the most difficult
of quartz to find there. While working a deeply buried milky white quartz vein last week, I came
across some pockets that contained quartz crystal plates and clusters that were completely covered
in black and brown manganese and iron oxides. Although the coatings completely masked the the crystals
so that I couldn't really tell what was hiding underneath, the crystal shapes of some of the larger
blockier crystals resembled amethyst that I had previously recovered at the mine. After cleaning
and "cooking" the specimens in boiling oxalic acid, I found that I had, indeed, recovered quite a
number of pale amethyst specimens. Yippee!