Saturday, September 02, 2006

Tourmaline (part 6) Maine. Since its discovery in 1898, production

Tourmaline (part 6) Maine. Since its discovery in 1898, production from the mine has exceeded thousands of kilograms of high-quality tourmaline. The mines ability to yield large quantities of quality tourmaline was clearly demonstrated by Plumbago Mining Corp. The company reported that from October 1972 until the Fall of 1974, it produced more than one metric ton of fine-quality tourmaline.

Other mines and quarries in a three county area produce gem- and specimen-grade tourmalines. The level and type of activities at each mine or quarry vary from year to year. Currently, most of them are open to hobbyist or professional collectors for a fee or with the owners permission.

Maine tourmalines come in a wide variation of colors, deep grass green to light green to yellow-green to blue green. They are also found in all shades of red, from pink to deep red, and blue-green to light blue to deep blue, and as colorless crystals. The State's mines also produce bicolors and watermelon crystals. The colors can be very fine and some believe that Maine tourmalines set the standard for non-chrome green tourmaline.

In our next issue we will learn about Peridot, please visit our Beading Newsletter Archives section located at the left hand side of our homepage or simply click here. (House Of Gems)