Ste Marie-aux-Mines Show 2011 - Report 2

25 June 2011

Welcome back to Ste Marie-aux-Mines 2011. The show is in full swing with many people filling the tent lined streets. Thankfully by Friday the heavy showers had ceased and all the exhibitors and visitors have been enjoying spells of warm sunshine.

crowds 1
Ste Marie busy with collectors and dealers

crowds 2
Another photo of a busy Ste Marie with pretty regional architecture in the background

crowds 3
Happy mineral hunters at Ste Marie!

Lloyds and Hackers
...and here are the Lloyds and the Hackers enjoying their breakfast in the sunshine.

Sleeping dog
Some are finding it all a bit too much - like this dog sleeping on one of the main thoroughfares.

Most of the dealers were set up by Thursday so there were many interesting items to see...

Mesolite pair
Here's an Indian Mesolite bought by Vyacheslav Morozov. Please note: this is the most popular way to display such a specimen.

Some very well crystallised Cuprite and Native Copper (some with Marshite and Native Silver too) have been found over the last couple of years from Rubtsovskoe in Russia - but Sergei Belostotskiy had some lovely velvety blue Azurite nodules from the same locality.

Russian Azurite
A flat of Azurite nodules from Rubtsovskoe, Russia - courtesy of Sergei Belostotskiy

Russian Azurite
A close up of a c.8cm Azurite nodule from Rubtsovskoe, Russia - courtesy of Sergei Belostotskiy

Copper after cuprite

...and here is a great pseudomorph of Copper after Cuprite from aforementioned locality of Rubtsovskoe, Russia - courtesy of Sergei Belostotskiy

Laszlo Palinkas had a few flats of a new find of Amethyst exhibiting an usual botryoidal habit from Nyíri, Zempléni Mts., Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén Co., Hungary.

Amethyst Hungary
New find of Amethyst from Nyíri, Zempléni Mts., Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén Co., Hungary - courtesy of Laszlo Palinkas

Amethyst Hungary
Amethyst from Nyíri, Hungary before and after cleaning - courtesy of Laszlo Palinkas

Laszlo also had an old 1950s collection of fluorescent minerals from Franklin, New Jersey, USA including Willemite, Willemite var. Troostite, Rhodonite, and a large 15cm cluster of Franklinite and Willemite exhibiting Franklinite crystals to 4cm on edge.

Franklin collection
A collection of Franklin minerals - courtesy of Laszlo Palinkas

Big Franklinite
A large Franklinite and Willemite cluster from Franklin, New Jersey, USA with 4cm Franklinte crystals- courtesy of Laszlo Palinkas

Continuing on our tour around we found this impressively sized Fluorite and Galena, from Frazer's Hush Mine, Weardale, Co. Durham, England lying amongst much more contemporary material.

Frazers Hush Fluorite
Fluorite and Galena, from Frazer's Hush Mine, Weardale, Co.Durham, England.

Christophe Dubois had a Bisbeeite from Kambove Mine, Congo on his stall - a rare sight.

Crystal models
Christophe Dubois also had a mass of cute wooden crystal models in the corner of one of his cabinets

Here's H. Gerstner and Sons stand displaying well made cabinets for the collector.

fossil lamp

...and for your home furnishing needs a fossilized coral made into a lampshade!


The Theatre hosts many of the top dealers as well as some special displays. One of the special displays this year was on the famous La Malines Mines District of Saint-Laurent-le-Minier, Gard, Languedoc-Roussillon, France. This mine is the biggest lead-zinc deposit in France and has produced many good sulphide mineral specimens including large and well crystallised Bournonites.

Les Malines
Information panel of the minerals of Les Malines

Bournonite 1
Bournonite - Les Malines, France c. 25cm wide with "cogs" to 6cm

Bournonite 2
Another large Bournonite - Les Malines, France c. 18cm wide with "cogs" to 5cm

Baryte Les Malines
Baryte "ball" - Les Malines, France - ball c. 5cm

Many of the dealers in the Theatre had interesting and beautiful specimens on display and here are just a few that caught our eye:

Fluorite on Quartz
A superbly placed octahedral crystal of pink Fluorite on a Quartz crystal from Chamonix, France

Cadmian Calcite
A caramel-yellow specimen of Cadmian Calcite from Tsumeb, Namibia

A sumptuous deep-blue Tanazanite crystal measuring c. 5cm tall

A large sharp 1cm Kammererite crystal from Kop Krom, Turkey - a very large crystal of this species.

Two tone Fluor
Our neighbours had this pretty two-tone octahedral crystal of Fluorite on matrix from Arghballa Mine, Morocco - interesting as the two colours were not like classic zonation but particular to the alternate faces of the octahedron.

We spied this interesting specimen of yellowish Tungstite on Scheelite with Quartz from Mundo Neuvo, Peru

Here's the lovely Eva in traditionally dress on Frédéric Escaut's stand - it's always necessary to have pictures of pretty ladies in your show report -
that's what Jolyon (of advised me.

Stibiconite after Stibnite as a very fine divergent group, crystals to c. 25cm from Xikuangshan, Hunan, China

Arseno on Ilvaite
This very interesting association of Arsenopyrite on Ilvaite from Huanggangliang Iron Mine, Inner Mongolia, China - we have seen the Ilvaites coming out of here recently but only few displaying this association.

Calcite Daye
A large specimen of translucent and lusterous Calcite displaying crystals to 10cm from Daye, Hubei, China


Fluorite Pink
A fine pink 8cm cubo-octahedral crystal of Fluorite nesting amongst a bed of Muscovite from Nagar, Hunza Valley, Pakistan - Fluorite crystal c. 9cm

Calcite on Amethyst
An Amethyst druse with interesting perpendicular arranged Calcite scalenohedra from Rio Grande do Sol, Brazil

Ian and Wayne
Here are Wayne Leicht and Ian Bruce attending to customers' questions.

Here are a few more selected photos from the Crystal Classics/Kristalle stand:

A excellent transparent and adamantine modified octahedral Diamond crystal (4mm) on a conglomerate matrix from Sierra Leone (Crystal Classics/Kristalle).

A very fine specimen of classic blue Smithsonite from the Kelly Mine, USA - with a sumptuous "wet-look" lustre (Crystal Classics/Kristalle).

An excellent specimen displaying platy crystals of Polybasite to 1cm - from Sirena, Mexico (Crystal Classics/Kristalle).

A relatively large and translucent vibrant green Emerald crystal (c. 4cm) upon a small portion of Calcite matrix (Crystal Classics/Kristalle).

A fine display specimen of Cinnabar on white Dolomite matrix. The Cinnabar crystals reach up to 2cm in longest dimension (Crystal Classics/Kristalle).

And finally a specimen of well arranged pink scalenohedral crystals of Cobaltocalcite - crystals to 5cm (Crystal Classics/Kristalle).

Ste Marie will unfortunately wind down on the Sunday afterwhich we will be returning to the UK. It's been a busy show with changeable weather but it's always a pleasure to attend. Thanks for viewing our report and we toast a cool glass of Gewurztraminer in your honour!

A bientot!

The Crystal Classics/Kristalle team

Author: Steve & Ed
Categories: News & Information

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