are trademarks of Western Publishing Company, Inc.

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1- II
Illustrated by



Professor of. Art, Un iversi ty of I l l i nois
´ /1
Western Publishing Company, Inc.
Racine, Wisconsin
Nothi ng i s as i mportant in the natural worl d as our own
earth and the rocks beneath our feet. So i t was i nevi tabl e
t hat t he 'Gol den Nature Gui des i ncl ude an i ntroducti on to
rocks and mi neral s. The task of sel ecti ng, descri bi ng, and
i l l ustrati ng mi neral s, rocks, and geol ogic structures has
many i nherent di fcul ti es. We are gratef ul to our col ­
l eagues and t o other experts who have hel ped. May we
parti cu l ar l y thank members of the Geol ogy Department
of the Uni versi ty of I l l i noi s: Drs. Chapman, Droste, Gri m,
Hagner, Henderson, Merri l l , Wanl ess, and White, and
Drs. Col l i nson, Swann, and Wi l l man of the I l l i noi s State
Geol ogical Survey for speci mens and sl i des, and for i n­
formati on and encouragement. Some speci mens came
from Uni versi ty of I l l i noi s Natural Hi story Museum and
departmental col l ecti ons; some fr om War d' s Natural Sci ­
ence Establ i shment. The gem col l ecti ons at the Chicago
Museum of Natural Hi story were i nval uabl e. Fi ne Koda­
chromes were provi ded by Scott lewis. Maps came l arge­
l y from i nformati on i n the Minerals Yearbook of the Bureau
of Mi nes, and from other maps and publ i cati ons of the
United States Geol ogical Survey.
H. S. Z.
P. R. S.
©Copyri ght 1Vb¯ by Western Publ i s hi ng Company, I nc. Al l r i ght s reserved,
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vi sual reproducti on or for use in any knowl edge retri eval system or devi ce,
unl ess permi ssi on i n wri ti ng i s obtai ned from the copyri ght propri etor. Pro­
duced in the U.ô.A. by Western Publ i shi ng Company, I nc. Publ i shed by
Gol den Press, New York, N. Y. li brary of Congress Catal og Card Number:
61 -8326
INTRODUCTION - . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
What is in thi s book and how to use it.
An i ntroducti on to the earth, its crust, and
the rocks t hat make i t up
Where and how to col l ect, study, and i den­
tify rocks and mi neral s.
Physi cal and chemi cal properti es, crystal
form, har dness, cl eavage, chemi cal tests.
METALLIC MINERALS .................. .
The common mi ner al s that are sou rces of
i ron, al umi num, ur ani um, and other metal s.
I ncl udi ng cal ci te, gypsum, various forms of
quartz; graphi te, asbestos, and many others.
GEM MINERALS ...................... .
Val ued mi neral s that ar e cut and pol i shed.
Preci ous, semi preci ous, and syntheti c stones.
ROCK-FORMING MINERALS - . . . . . . . . . . . . 94-108
Mi neral s i mportant in the formati on of rocks
wi despread i n the earth's crust.
IGNEOUS ROCKS - - - . . e . - - - e - . - - - - . . - - - 110-120
lavas and rocks for med far underground.
SEDIMENTARY ROCKS .. - . - - - .. - - e .. - e . - 121-132
Thei r ori gi ns and t he typi cal geol ogi c struc-
t ures associ ated wi th them.
METAMORPHIC ROCKS - - - - - - . e o - - . . . - - - 133-140
Those al tered from t he above ki nds. Thei r
i denti fcati on and geol ogi c si gnifcance.
ROCKS IN DAILY USE - - - . . - . - . . . s . e . . . . 141-155
MORE INFORMATION - - e • e e e - e - e e e e - e e e 156-157
INDEX e . . a . . . . a . . e . a . ø . . . . . e . . . + = e e e . 158-160
Thi s is a gui de to oi d you in i denti fyi ng rocks and mi neral s.
But i t i s more than that. Thi s book wi l l al so hel p you un­
derstand the i mportance of rocks and mi neral s i n our dai l y
l i ves. Hence you wi l l fnd i nformation on the uses of mi n­
eral s and mi neral products as wel l as ai ds in i denti fcati on .
Ski l l i n i denti fyi ng rocks an d mi neral s comes wi th ex­
peri ence. Take this book on. hi kes, tri ps, and vacati ons.
Vi si t col l ecti ng pl aces, exami ne speci mens, and try si mpl e
fel d tests. Remember t hat onl y t he most common kinds of
rocks and mi neral s are shown i n t hi s book. Even these
may vary consi derabl y i n thei r physi cal properti es.
Thumb through thi s book before you go out on tri ps.
Read the i ntroductory secti ons. Next, become fami l i ar wi th
t he pi ctures of mi neral s, rocks, and rock structures. Thi s
may enabl e you to i dentify some common rocks and mi ner­
al s at si ght. Maps on some pages show where i mportant de­
posits are l ocated. Books l i sted on p. 1 56 wi l l hel p furtner,
but l ocal i nqui ry is often needed to pi n- point . l ocati ons.
As you make observations and· col l ect speci mens, check··
your book or make margi nal notes for l ater reference use.
I n t he l ong run, your records may be as i mportant as the
speci mens you col l ect.
SEEING ROCKS AND MINERALS i s somethi ng hard
to avoi d. You have t o stal k wi l dl i fe and awai t spri ng
fowers, but every roadcut, bank, cl if, excavati on, or
quarry exposes rocks and mi neral s for you t o s ee. Learn
to watch for outcrops, pl aces where bedrock i s natural l y
exposed, as in ri dges or cl ifs. Wherever erosi on is taki ng
pl ace, rock i s sooner or l ater exposed. Outcrops of rocks
are common i n many parts of New Engl and and the
Southwest. Where soi l i s thi ck, as i n the mi ddl e states,
one may have to search for outcrops al ong ri ver val l eys
and on steeper hi l l si des.
Man- made exposures of rocks and mi ner al s are often
the best source of s peci mens. Look i n road and rai l road
cuts, in quarri es, rock pits, dump pi l es around mi nes, and
s i mi l ar pl aces. Look wi th care. Ask permissi on before en­
teri ng a quarry. Be al ert for new roads, bri dges, or foun­
dati ons where excavati ons expose fresh rocks.
l ava- capped
made af rock­
l i mestone
contai ns mi neral­
cal ci te
Look for Surface Forms These are evi dent i n
the physi cal forms seen on the surface-hi l l s, val l eys, cl ifs,
and basi ns. Some forms and structures are associ ated wi th
a parti cul ar type of rock and can be recogni zed at a di s­
tance. Knowi ng forms and structures does more t han hel p
you fi nd rocks and mi neral s. I t ai ds you i n i nter preti ng t he
l andscape, s o t hat you can read dramati c chapters of
the hi story of the eart h. Rock structures are deal t wi th
under rocks (pp. 12 1 -1 45) . Physi cal geol ogy treats them
i n greater detai l .
Look for Rocks These are t he material s of whi ch
the cr ust of the ear th i s made. They for m the mountai ns
and under l i e t he val l eys. You see t hem when t hey have
been pushed or fol ded upward or when they j ut through
soi l to form an outcrop. Al l mi neral s occur wi thi n rocks,
and often are components of rocks. Rocks i ncl ude the sol i d
bedrock and al so the unconsol i dated debr i s above it,
cal l ed the mant l e.
Look for Minerals These are the bri cks of whi ch
the earth itsel f i s made. They are i norgani c chemi cal
el ements or compounds (some quite compl ex) found nat­
ur al l y in the earth. Because each is a chemi cal or a mi x­
ture of cl osel y rel ated chemical s, a mi neral has fai r l y
defni te and stabl e properti es.
What Is Behind It All is as mysteri ous as the ori gi n
of t he universe, t he sol ar system, and t he earth.· Geol ogy
i s the sci ence of the earth and its hi story. Mi neral ogy (the
study of mi neral s) and petrol ogy (the study of rocks) are
two divi si ons of the sci ence of geol ogy.
The Earth i s a bal l of rock 7927 mi l es in di ameter,
wei ghi ng about 6.6 sexti l l i on tons. I t i s composed of a
dense core as heavy as iron and several massi ve rock l ay­
ers-denser near the core and l i ghter toward the surface.
The ·cont i nents themsel ves are i sl ands of grani ti c rotk
(p. 1 1 1) fl oati ng on the denser, darker rocks which under­
l i e the ocean basi ns and go down perhaps 600 mi l es. Most
of our economic mi ner al s are i n the l i ghter grani ti c rocks
and rock der ived from them. I n the process of mount ai n
bui l di ng some of the darker rocks have come to t he surface
and can be seen.
The Earth and Man are i nseparabl e, even at the
dawn of an age of space travel . I t i s i mpossi bl e to name
a major i ndustry which i s not di rect l y or i ndi rectl y depend­
ent upon rocks and mi neral s. Mi neral resources are ex­
tremel y i mportant, and the i ncreased use of them i s a
di rect measure of progress. It is impossi bl e to t hi nk of a
t i me when dependence on mi neral s wi l l cease. New uses
for mi neral s open technol ogi cal vi stas. Urani um mi neral s,
once oddi ti es, are now a source of energy.
fi nt knife
1 4,00 B. C.
bronze k nife
500 B. C.
i ron knife ( bronze handl e)
A. D. 200
Ear l y man made these weapons by usi ng mi ner al resou rces.
Mineral Resources were i mportant t housan ds of
years ago when men trekked hundreds of mi l es to fi nt
quarri es. As men l earned to make bronze and steel , they
became essenti al . The fossi l fuel s-coal and petrol eum­
are the ones on whi ch we sti l l depend, and atomi c en­
gi nes wi l l n eed urani um, thori um, and s i mi l ar metal s.
Conservation of mi ner al resources poses real prob­
l ems, for most of these can never be repl aced. We have
al ready begun to mi ne the ocean-our greatest deposi t of
l ow-grade ore. Conservati on of mi neral speci mens i s a
speci al case. In some si ngl e deposits of rare mi neral s, the
frst col l ectors have taken the enti re suppl y. Carel ess col ­
l ectors often spoi l fne materi al . When you go col l ecti ng,
remember to be consi derate of others.
li mestone quarry near Bl oomi ngton, I n d.
Ri ker mount Mi ner al cobi net
COLLECTING i s the frst and most obvi ous acti vi ty for
anyone i nterested i n rocks and mi neral s. And wel l i t
mi ght be, for t he number of mi neral speci es comes to
about 1500, and there are wel l over a hundred ki nds of
rocks. A col l ecti on enabl es you to study, compare, and
anal yze mi neral s; hence you l earn more about t hem. I t' s
fun to fnd, buy, and swap speci mens. Col l ect i ng takes
you out-of- doors; i t al so paves the way for more seri ous
studi es i n sci ence or engi neeri ng.
Where to Collect I n additi on to the general pl aces
menti oned on p. 5, run down speci fc mi neral l ocal i ti es
near you. Become fami l i ar wi th the books and magazi nes
l i sted on p. 156 and wi th publ ications of your state
geol ogi cal survey. Mi neral ogi cal magazi nes often l i st
mi neral l ocal i ti es, and i n many states gui des to mi neral
deposi ts are avai l abl e. Ask mi neral ogi sts and l ocal col ­
l ectors. They wi l l be gl ad to hel p you out .
How to Collect i nvol ves the pl ace you go to. A
col l ecti ng tri p s houl d have s pecifc objecti ves. Study the
area i n advance to l earn the l ay of the l and, accessi bi l i ty,
rock struct ures, and possi bl e mi neral s. Al l ow ampl e t i me.
Suit your pl ans to the l ocat i on. I n deserts, col l ect earl y
or l at e; mi dday s un on bare rock can be overpoweri ng.
Work systemati cal l y; don' t attempt too much.
Equipment can be si mpl e: a pi l e of ol d newspaper
for wrappi ng speci mens, a notebook and penci l , are al l
you need at a mi n e dump, where materi al i s broken.
Otherwi se, a geol ogist' s pi ck or pl asterer' s hammer i s
essenti al-and get a good one. A col d chi sel , a magni fy­
i ng gl ass, compass, heavy gl oves, a pocket knife, and a
shoul der bag or knapsack are usef ul . Don' t carry too
much. You wi l l need water and l unch-and a knapsack
f ul l of rocks gets heavy.
The Specimen You Collect shoul d be sel ected wi th
care. From a dozen that seem l i kel y, keep onl y a few.
Hand-si zed speci mens are preferred. Some col l ectors l ook
for s mal l , perfect, t humbnai l -sized speci mens and study
them wi th a l ow- power microscope. Be sure your speci men
i s fresh. Tri m i t to shape. Thi s takes ski l l -you soon l earn
that l i ght bl ows pl aced correctl y do the tri ck. Wrap your
speci mens as shown bel ow. I ncl ude a l abel with fel d i den­
ti fcati on, l ocati on, and date.
SPECIMENS AT HOME take up room and gather dust.
Col l ecti ng i s fun, but gi ve some thought to what you wi l l
do wi th your col l ecti on. Some rocks an d mi neral s are so
attracti ve that you may want them for thei r sheer beauty.
Set these where you can see and enjoy t hem. But if you
i ntend to have a study col l ecti on, more i s requi red. As a
frst step each speci men must be accuratel y i denti fed,
cl assi fed, and l abel ed.
Identifcation is best made by the physi cal char­
acteri sti cs of mi neral s and rocks ( pp. 13- 24) . Check the
hardness, streak, specifi c gravity and, possi bl y, the crys­
tal form. Often the geol ogist at the state uni versity, mu­
seum, or geol ogi cal survey wi l l identi fy di fcul t speci mens.
Send hi m a smal l sampl e wi th exact detai l s of where i t
was found.
Classifcation of rocks and mi neral s depends on your
purposes. I n t hi s book for begi nners, a very si mpl e cl assi �
fi cati on i s used. More advanced books fol l ow a standard
chemi cal cl assi fi cati on for mi neral s, and a more detai l ed
cl assi fcati on of rocks. Cl assi fcati on goes one step beyond
i denti fcati on. I t shows you t he rel ati onshi p between rocks
or mi neral s. That poi nts the way to di scoveri ng thei r ori gi n,
hi story, and modes of occurrence.
Labeling usual l y begi ns wi th a spot of qui ck- dryi ng
enamel put on the speci men i n an i nconspi cuous pl ace.
After i t dries, a number i s added i n I ndi a i nk. Thi s number
refers to a l abel and a catal og, bot h of whi ch shoul d i n­
cl ude number, name, l ocati on, col l ector, date, and rock
or mi neral associ ati ons.
1 1
shaped sections
pol i shed
OTHER ACTIVITIES rel ated to rocks and mi neral s i n­
cl ude the art and sci ence of gem col l ecti ng and gem
cutti ng. An amateur can col l ect or purchase an abundance
of semi preci ous stones which he can cut and pol i sh (p. 90)
to bri ng out thei r br i l l i ance. From this i t i s onl y one step
to maki ng your own jewel ry. Photographi ng rocks and
mi neral s i s a chal l enge t o t he cameraman. A cl ose- up l ens
reveal s str i ki ng detai l s of form and col or. Fi nal l y, more
experi enced amateurs may want to speci al i ze i n the mi n­
eral s of t hei r home l ocal ity or i n certai n groups, as t he
quartz mi neral s. Others may fi nd t hat experi ments wi th
fuorescent ( p. 22) or radi oacti ve mi neral s are i mportant
enough to demand thei r undi vi ded attenti on.
Mineralogy Clubs are so numerous t hat it is i mpos­
si bl e to l i st them here. They are pl enti ful in the East and
West, but are by no means l acki ng i n the mi ddl e states.
Some cl ubs speci al i ze i n gems, gem cutti ng, and pol i shi ng,
but most amateur groups are concerned wi th al l aspects
of rocks and mi neral s. Some are for al l , i ncl udi ng begi n­
ner s; a few are for advanced students and professi onal s.
Al l have meeti ngs, exhi bits, fel d tri ps, and someti mes
thei r own l aboratori es. Joi n a cl ub if there i s one nearby.
There is no better way to get started.
JADEI TE i s sodi um al umi num si l i ­
cate ( NaAI Si 206) . Col or: white,
yel l ow, brown, or green. Often a
gem ( p. 88); sel dom as crystal s.
SPODUMENE i s l ith i um al umi num
si l i cate (li AI Si 206) ; opaque­
whi te, l i l ac, or yel l ow. Rarel y a
transparent crystal l i ne gem stone.
MINERALS ARE CHEMICALS They are chemi cal el e­
ments or compounds found natural l y i n the crust of t he
earth. They are i norgani c, i n contrast t o organi c chemi cal s
( made mai nl y of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen) typi cal
of l i vi ng t hi ngs. Some mi neral s have a fxed chemi cal
composi ti on. Others are a seri es of rel ated compounds i n
whi ch one metal l i c el ement may whol l y or partl y repl ace
another. The t wo mi neral s above are very si mi l ar chem­
i cal l y and i n some of thei r physi cal properti es, but are
usual l y qui te di ferent in col or and other physi cal prop­
erti es. On l y rarel y wi l l a s i ngl e physi cal or chemi cal prop­
erty i dentify a mi neral . Usua l l y more characteri sti cs must
be used. These physi cal and chemical properti es are de­
scri bed on pp. 1 4 to 24. Some are i n herent and rel i abl e;
others are vari abl e and must be used wi t h care. You can
easi l y l earn to use the si mpl er physi cal and chemi cal tests.
I denti fcati on of many rare mi neral s often requi res ex­
pensi ve l aboratory equi pment and detai l ed chemi cal and
optical tests whi ch onl y an expert can make.
1 3
1 4
sodi um
i on ( No
combi nes wi th
by transferri ng
one el ectron per atom
and formi ng a
chl ori de
i on ( CI -)
whi ch are present i n sodi um chl ori de ( hal ite, p. 68)
ELEMENTS are the bui l di ng bl ocks of al l materi al s, i n­
cl udi ng mi neral s and rocks. About 1 00 el ements are
known. A dozen or so were known i n anci ent ti mes; the
l atest were found i n atom- spl itti ng experi ments. Al l are
made up of protons, neutrons, and el ectrons. These, com­
bi ned, form atoms of matter. The atoms i n turn j oi n to
form mol ecul es-the smollest particles usually produced
i n chemical reacti ons. When temperatures are hi gh, mol e­
cul es may break down i nto atoms or atom groups. Wi th
sl ow cool i ng these may joi n together, i n regul ar order, to
form crystal s. Most mi neral s are crystal l i ne, bei ng formed
from cool i ng mi xtures, li qui ds, or vapors i n the crust of
t he earth.
The arrangement of an otom's el ectrons determi nes
wi th what other el ements it wi l l combi ne, and i n what pro­
porti ons. The physi cal condi ti ons i n mol ten materi al s a l so
set the pattern by whi ch chemical el ements form difer­
ent mi neral s. The sci ence of physi cal chemi stry has much
t o reveal about how, why, and when mi neral s form.
shown by thi s thi n secti on of a
rack ri ch in pyroxene, here viewed
t hrough a pol ari zi ng mi croscope.
URE forms when a thi n sheet of
muscovite mi ca i s exami ned
through a pol ari zi ng mi croscope.
OPTICAL PROPERTIES of mineral s are used mai nl y by
experts, but amateurs shoul d know about t hem because
they are fundamental in preci se mineral i dentifcati on.
Opti cal i dentifi cati on i s hi ghl y accurate and can be used
wi th particl es of microscopi c si ze. X-rays sent through
thin fragments or powders produce a pattern dependent
on t he structure of the mol ecules and so are an ai d to
i dentifcati on. Pi eces of mineral s or rocks ar e mounted on
s l i des, then ground t i l l paper thin. These thi n secti ons are
examined t hrough ordi nary and pol ari zed l i ght. The
bendi ng of l i ght as it passes through the mineral s gi ves
patterns that ai d in i dentifcati on. Fragments of mineral s
can be i mmersed in transparent l i qui ds of di ferent den­
sity to measure thei r i ndex of refracti on. Thi s i s di stinct
for each mineral and i s rel ated to its crystal system ( pp.
16- 17) . Thus an expert can tel l if a di amond or emeral d
i s real or fal se wi thout doing any damage to the stone. I t
i s worth payi ng more attenti on t o these opti cal properti es
as you become more experi enced.
A check on thi s
¯ di amond' s i ndex
of refracion shows
that bottom i s
cemented gl ass.

i ndex 1.8
CRYSTAL FORM is cri ti cal in mi neral i denti fcati on as
it refects t he structure of the very mol ecul es of the mi n­
eral . I t i s al so t he most di fcul t characteri sti c t o us e and
one that requi res the most careful study. Yet crystal s are
so magn i fcent in thei r beauty and symmetry it is some­
ti mes hard to bel i eve they are natural . The study of how
they are formed reveal s mathemati cal rel ati onshi ps as
amazi ng and as beauti ful as the crystal s themsel ves. Per-
1 6
Cubic (Isometric) Sys­
tem i ncl udes crystals in whi ch
the thr ee axes (common to fve
of si x systems) are of equal
l ength and are at ri ght angl es
to one another, as i n a cube­
exampl es: gal ena, gar net, py­
rite, and hal ite.
Tetragonal System has
t wo axes of equal l ength and
one unequal . Al l three axes
are at ri ght angl es to one
another, as i n zi rcon, ruti l e,
and cassi terite.
Hexagonal System has
three equal axes at 1 20° an­
gl es arranged i n one pl ane
and one more axi s of a difer­
ent l ength at ri ght angl es to
these, as in quartz, beryl , cal ­
cite, tourmal i ne, and ci nnabar.
feet crystal s are rare, and some are of great val ue. How­
ever, a fragment or an i mperfect crystal wi l l yi el d basi c
data to the experi enced mi neral ogist. Someti mes crystal s
devel op i n c l usters, or as twi ns. They reveal di storti ons,
i ncl usi ons, and other i nterrupti ons i n thei r devel opment.
A very si mpl e out l i ne of the si x systems of crystal s i s gi ven
on these two pages as a bare i ntroducti on to the sci ence
of crystal l ography:
Orthorhombic System
has crystal s wi th three axes al l
at ri ght angl es, but al l of dif­
ferent l ength. Exampl es: sul fur,
barite, cel estite, staurol ite, and
ol i vi ne.
Monoclinic System has
three unequal axes, two of
whi ch are not at ri ght angl es.
The thi rd makes a ri ght angl e
t o t he pl ane of t he ot her two,
as i n orthocl ase, gypsum,
·mi cas, augite, epi dote, and
hornbl ende.
Triclinic System has three
unequal axes but none forms a
ri ght angl e wi th any other. Ex­
ampl es: pl agiocl ase fel dspars,
rhodoni te, and chal canthite.
A scratches B
Try to scratch
A wi th· B
Try to scratch
B with A
B does
scratch A
HARDNESS is used in a rough manner in mi neral i denti ­
fcati on. There are much more preci se ways of measuri ng
hardness i n i ndustrial l aboratori es. Though arbitrary,
Mohs' scal e of ten mi neral s i s useful :
1. Tal c
6. Orthocl ase
2. Gypsum 7. Quartz
3. Cal cite 8. Topaz
4. F l uori te 9. Coru ndum
5. Apati te 10. Di amond
Remember these ten by usi ng the odd sentence "The Gi rl s
Can F l i rt And Other Queer Thi ngs Can Do. " Gypsum i s
harder than tal c but not twi ce as hard; fuori te i s harder
t han cal cite and l ess hard than apati te. I f an unknown wi l l
scratch al l t h e mi neral s i n the scal e up t o 4 and i s scratched
by apatite, its hardness is between 4 and 5. Check care­
f ul l y to be sure there is a di sti nct scratch. Don' t test hard­
ness on the face of a val uabl e crystal . For fel d use here
are some other conveni ent standards of hardness:
fl e
6. 5
A bal ance used
SPECI FI C GRAVITY i s the rel ati ve wei ght of a mi ner al
compared t o t he wei ght of an equal vol ume of water.
Si nc  the wei ght of an equal vol ume of water i s i denti cal
wi th t he mi neral ' s l oss in wei ght when wei ghed in water,
speci fc gravi ty ( Sp. Gr. ) i s qui ckl y deter mi ned. A corun­
dum crystal wei ghi ng 2. 0 oz. dr y wei ghs 1 . 5 oz. when
suspended i n water. The l oss ( 0. 5 oz. ) di vi ded i nto the
dry wei ght gi ves a speci fc gravity of 4. 0. Thi s may seem
because corundum contai ns onl y al umi num {Sp. Gr.
2. 5) and oxygen, a gas. learn to esti mate s peci fi c gravity
and make your own measurements as an aid to i denti ­
fcati on. Bel ow are some average fgures.
Borax 1.7 Tal c 2.8 Cor undum 4.0
Sul fur 2.0 Muscovite 2.8 Rut i l e 4.2
Hal i te 2.1 Tremol i t e 3.0 Bari te 4.5
Sti l bite 2.2 Apati te 3.2 Zi rcon 4.7
Gypsum 2. 3 Croci dol ite 3.3 Zi nci te 5.5
Serpenti ne 2.5 Topaz 3.5 Cassiterite 7.0
Orthocl ase 2.6 Rhodoch rosite 3.6 Ci nnabar 8.0
Quartz 2.7 Staurol i te 3.7 Ur ani nite 9.5
Cal ci te 2.7 Si deri te 3.9 Gol d 19.3
( Sp. Gr. of some mi ner al s may vary as much as 25 per cent from sped·
men to speci men. )
al umi num
Sp. Gr. 2.5
a gas
Sp. Gr . 4. 0
Cubi c
cl eavage:
gal ena
cl eavage:
cal cite
cl eav
mi ca
CLEAVAGE i s the way some mi neral s spl i t al ong pl anes
rel ated to t he mol ecul ar structure of the mi neral and par­
al l el to possi bl e crystal faces: The perfecti on of cl eavage
i s descri bed i n fve steps from poor ( as i n born ite) to fai r,
good, perfect, and emi nent (as i n mi cas) . The types of
cl eavage are usual l y descri bed b. the number and di rec­
ti on of cl eavage pl anes. Three exampl es of cl eavage are
shown above. Use cl eavage as an ai d in i denti fcati on­
t hough you may at frst fnd i t di fcul t t o tel l the face of
a crystal from a fresh, perfect cl eavage surface.
Fracture is the breakage of a mi ner al s peci men i n
s ome way other t han al ong cl eavage pl anes. Not al l mi n
eral s show good cl eavage; most show fracture. Fresh frac­
tures show the mi ner al 's true col or. Fi ve to seven types of
fracture are recogni zed; three are shown bel ow.
Conchoi dal
obsi di an
COLOR is the frst of t hree charac­
teri sti cs that have to do wi th the
way a mi neral l ooks. I n most metal ­
l i c ores i t i s a safe cl ue i n i denti fca­
ti on. But i n quartz, corundum, cal ­
ci te, fuori te, agate, garnet, tourma­
l i ne, and others i t is often due to
i mpuri ti es and may vary greatl y.
So use col or wi th cauti on and use
onl y the col or of a freshl y broken
s urface. Note the surface tarni sh
on some metal l i c ores; i t di fers
from the true col or, but can be used
for i denti fcati on al so.
Streak i s the col or of t he pow­
dered mi neral best seen when the
mi neral i s rubbed agai nst a streak
pl ate of ungl azed porcel ai n (the
back of a ti l e i s excel l ent). I n metal ­
l i c ores the streak may di fer from
t he col or and so i s worth noti ng.
Luster depends on the absorp­
ti on, refecti on, or refracti on of
l i ght by the surface of a mi neral . I t
i s often an ai d i n i denti fcati on.
About a dozen terms are used, most
of whi ch are sel f-expl anatory:
adamantine ( bri l l i ant), l i ke di a­
mond; vitreous ( gl assy), l i ke quartz;
and metallic ( l i ke metal ), l i ke gal e­
na. The prefx· sub- i s used when
the characteri sti c i s l ess cl ear. Oth­
er l usters to note: dul l , earthy, s i l ky,
greasy, pear l y, resi nous.
metal l i c
resi nous
gl assy
ULTRAVI OLET LI GHT is i nvi si bl e. I ts waves are too short
to be detected by the eye. However, some mi neral s, when
exposed to thi s l i ght, are "exci ted"-they absorb the ul tra­
vi ol et l i ght and emi t l onger l i ght rays whi ch we see as
col ors. Mi neral s whi ch do thi s are fuorescent. I f they con­
t i nue to emi t l i ght after the ul travi ol et rays have been cut
of, they are phosphorescent ( l i ke the l umi nous di al of a
watch). A quartz l amp i s a fne source of ul travi ol et l i ght
of short ( about 1 11 0,000 i n. ) wavel ength. An aron l i ght
gives l onger ul travi ol et rays. Not al l mi neral s fuoresce
when exposed to ul travi ol et l i ght. Urani um mi neral s do;
so does scheel ite, an ore of tungsten, and other tungsten
mi neral s. Other mi ner al s may fuoresce because of i m­
puriti es, and sti l l others fuoresce when from one l ocal ity
and not when from another; this makes the search for
fuorescent mi neral s exci ti ng. A portabl e quartz l amp
can be used on fel d tri ps. Because of t hei r beauty, fuores­
cent mi neral s recei ve a good deal of attenti on, but the
seri ous study of fuorescence i s a di fcul t one.
MAGNETI SM occurs in a few
mi neral s. lodestone (a form of mag­
netite) is a natural magnet. An al ­
ni co magnet wi l l attract bi ts of mag­
netite and pyrrhoti te. A few man­
ganese, n i ckel , and i ron-titani um
ores become magneti c when heated
by a bl owpi pe.
mi neral s are vari ed. Thi n sl abs of
quartz crystal control radi o fre­
quenci es. Crystal s of sulfur, topaz,
and other mi neral s devel op an el ec­
tri c charge when rubbed. Tourma­
l i ne crystal s, when heated, devel op
opposi te charges at opposi te ends
of t he crystal .
HEAT may rai se the temperature of
a mi neral t i l l i t wi l l f us e i n a bl ow­
pi pe fame. Use onl y smal l , t hi n
spl i nters. The seven- poi nt scal e of
fusi bi l i t
, wi th exampl es, i s:
1. Stibnite fuses i n al cohol l amp or (980
candl e fame
2. Chalcopyrite fuses easi l y i n bl ow- (1475
pi pe fame
3. Almandite ·fuses l ess easi l y i n ( 1920
bl owpi pe fame
4. Actinolite: thi n edges fuse easi l y (2190
with bl owpi pe
5. Orthoclase: t hi n edges fuse wi th (2374
di fculty
6. Enstatite¦ onl y thi nnest edges fuse (2550
wi th bl owpi pe
7. Quartz¦ no fusi ng at al l i n bl ow- (Over
pipe fame 2550
Heated tour mal i ne
devel ops el ectric
bl owpi pe

chal copyri te
GEI GER COUNTERS are not a tool for the amateur
mineralogist but have become well known because of their
use in locating or checking deposits of uranium and thor­
ium. The Geiger tube is the heart of the counter. A wire
down the center of the tube has a negative charge. How­
ever, no current fows, because of the gas that flls the
tube. When the tube is exposed to radiation, some of the
molecules of the gas are ionized. They develop an electric
charge because of electrons knocked from them. The ion­
ized gas conducts electricity and there is a momentary
fash of current through the tube. This is recorded on a
counter or dial, or heard as a click in headphones. Cosmic
rays from outer space also discharge the Geiger tube,
and these must be considered when searching for ore.
In order to get an efect, the ordinary Geiger counter
must be held close to the ore. Hence it works best on out­
crops and other exposed rock. The richer the ore, the
more numerous the discharges and clicks. The scintillom­
eter is another sensitive apparatus used to detect radio­
active materials.
MI NERALS as natural inorganic chemicals can be iden­
tifed by their chemical properties as well as by hardness,
streak, or luster. Once a mineral is dissolved (often a dif·
fcult task), other chemical solutions can be added to
identify the elements in it. Chemists make constant use
of these "wet" tests. Although prospectors working in iso­
lated places can frequently identify a mineral or rock by
its physical properties, they also collect and bring material
in for laboratory study.
Laboratory tests often involve a blowpipe, Q short metal
tube for blowing air into a fame. In blowpipe analysis, a
bit of the mineral to be tested is heated on a charcoal
block. The colored coatings which form identify the ele­
ments present. The mineral may be powdered, also, and
a touch of the powder absorbed in a drop of melted borax
to give a bead test (p. 28) . When mineral powder is
brought into a fame, the fame color may be studied.
Powdered minerals are also heated in closed or open tubes
(p. 30).
Mineral analysis calls for the basic materials listed be­
low-as well as for a working knowledge of chemistry.
Books to help you are listed on p. 156.
Bl owpi pe
Charcoal bl ocks
Al cohol or gas bur ner
Test tubes
Open tubes
Chemi cal forceps
Pl ati num wi re
Mortar and pestl e
Bl ue and green gl ass
Hammer and s mal l anvi l
li tmus paper
Borax powder and other
chemi cal s
Use bl owpi pe to send o stream of
oi r i nto fame, mol di ng it i nto a
narrow cone about 2 i n. l ong.
For reduci ng fame, hol d bl owpi pe
behi nd fame and heat speci men
at tip of i nteri or bl uish cone. For
oxi di zi ng fame, hol d bl owpi pe i n
fame and heat speci men at tip.
BLOWPIPE TESTS make use of an al cohol , gas, or
candl e fame. Movi ng the bl owpi pe back and forth as
shown above produces an oxi di zi ng fame (extra oxygen
comes fr om the ai r bl own i nto the fame) or a reduci ng
fame ( hot gases take oxygen from t he speci men) . The
powdered speci men set i n a hol l ow at one end of a char­
coal bl ock is heated in the fame unt i l changes occur.
Someti mes a fne, col ored coati ng (subl i mate) forms; some­
ti mes a bead of metal i s l eft behi nd or characteri sti c fumes
are rel eased. When a fux (i odi de, bromi de, or chromate)
i s added to the powdered mi neral , di ferentl y col ored
coati ngs form. These may be used to confrm the tests. I n
some tests t he mi neral i s heated on a bl ock of pl aster i n­
stead of a charcoal bl ock. Fi nal l y, the bl owpi pe can be
used to heat a mi neral speci men di rectl y, as i n determi n­
i ng fusi bi l ity. A s l i ver of the mi neral is hel d by forceps
di rectl y i n the fame, as shown on p. 23.
Bl owpi pe test for zi nc: heati ng ore
on charcoal with oxi di zi ng fame.
the metal l i c el ement i n the mi neral
speci men:
Anti mony forms a dense white
coati ng, bl ui sh at the fri nge; i t is
vol at i l e, but not as much as arseni c,
whi ch forms a s i mi l ar coat i ng and
has a garl i c odor.
Bi smuth mi neral s give an
orange-yel l ow coati ng, whi ch be­
comes greeni sh- yel l ow on cool i ng.
A gr ay bri tt l e button of bi smuth
al so forms. When i odi de fux i s
mixed wi th the powdered mi neral ,
the coati ng i s yel l ow wi t h a reddi sh
Copper When oxi des are
heated in t he reduci ng fame wi th
a fux practi cal l y no coati ng resul ts,
but a reddish bal l of metal l i c cop­
per remai ns. Bl owpi pe fame i s col ­
ored bl ue-green.
Lead mi neral s heated i n a re­
duci ng fame l eave behi nd a gray
bal l of metal l i c l ead. The coat i ng i s
yel l owi sh ( darker when hot) wi th a
white or bl ui sh border.
Zi nc mi ner al s gi ve a smal l coat-
i ng cl ose to the speci men-bri ght
yel l ow when hot ( p. 26), white when
col d. Add a drop of cobal t nitrate
sol uti on to the coati ng, reheat, and
t he coati ng wi l l t ur n green. Use
pl aster bl ock wi th i odide f ux.
Bead in oxi di zi ng fame.
BEAD TESTS help identify metals when minerals are dis­
solved in a fux and heated. The fux is borax, heated
in a loop of platinum wire till a clear glassy bead is
formed. The hot borax bead is touched to a trace of the
powdered mineral and is reheated in reducing and
oxidizing fames. The color of the bead is noted when hot
and when cold. All traces of a previous bead must be
"washed" of the wire before a new test is made. Below
are the colors in some common bead tests.
Metal Hot Cold Hot Cold
Anti mony yell ow col orless yellow col orless
Chromi um yell ow green green green
Cobalt bl ue bl ue bl ue bl ue
Copper green bl ue color l ess brown
I ron yell ow green green green
Manganese violet-brown vi ol et col or l ess col orless
Mol ybdenum yell ow col orless brown br own
Nickel vi ol et brown col orless-g ray colorless-gray
Ti tani um colorless col orless-wh i te yell ow-gray yell ow
Tungsten yel l ow colorless yel l ow brown
Urani um yell ow yel l ow-brown green green
Vanadi um yell ow green brown green
Alter M. ZÌm¸ Bl owpi pe Anal ysi s and Tests for Common Minerals, 7935.

Strong yel low, Strong, i ntense Bl ue, wi th some Vi ol et, vi si bl e
i nvi si bl e through cri mson- red green, depend- as red through
cobal t gl ass. fame. i ng on ore. cobal t gl ass.
FLAME TESTS depend on the fact that small amounts of
mineral introduced into a fame will color the flame, de­
pending on the metals it contains. Flame tests are fairly
crude, but when such flames are viewed through a spec­
troscope, a highly accurate kind of chemical analysis is
possible. The spectroscope and the X-ray are important
tools in advanced work with minerals and are essential
in working with small, rare specimens.
To make simple fame tests, use a clean platinum or
nichrome wire. The wire, dipped in strong hydrochloric
acid, is held in the flame until no change in fame color
is seen. The wire loop is touched to a bit of the powdered
mineral, also moistened with acid, and then famed. The
flame may be viewed directly, or through a cobalt blue
glass, which masks the yellow sodium color. The Merwin
screen, made of two overlapping layers of colored plastic,
is also used to view flame colors.
LEAD ORE (gal ena) t urns a l ight
col or and forms a wh i te s ubl i mate
when heated in on open tube.
On contin ued heat i ng it forms a
yel low to reddi s h-brown subl imate
in t he cool port of t he t ube.
TUBE TESTS involve heating powdered minerals i n closed
and open tubes to see what sublimates form in the upper,
cooler part of the tube, and to notice fumes and odors
from the heated mineral. The closed tube is an ordinary
pyrex test tube. Use only enough mineral to barely cover
the bottom. Hold at a low angle in Bunsen burner fame
and heat until mineral is red hot. Watch for fumes and
sublimates. The open tube can be a piece of straight or
bent glass tubing about six inches long. The powdered
mineral is inserted about an inch from the lower end,
and the specimen is heated while being held at a low
angle. Do not tilt higher or the specimen will spill. Air
circulates through the open tube and oxidizes the mineral
powder. Sublimates form at the cool end. Use a test tube
holder for these tests.
in matri x
The metals are the core of our civilization. Life as we
know it would be impossible without them. Here are the
minerals from which our most important metals are ob­
tained; they form an interesting group for collectors.
COPPER nuggets were found by anci ent man. Later, cop­
per was smel ted from its ores. Today it i s essenti al for
practical l y al l thi ngs el ectrical and for many other uses.
Chi l e, Peru, Cyprus, Africa, Japan, and Austral i a have
l arge deposits. Our deposits are l argel y i n Michi gan,
Montana, Ten nessee, and the Southwest. Copper occurs
pri nci pal l y in volcani c rocks and in vei ns. Native capper
(H. 2. 5 to 3, Sp. Gr. 8. 9) is hard to mi ne. The sul fdes and
carbonates descri bed on t he next page ar e easi er t o
handl e. Some mal achite and azurite i s cut f or ornaments
and gems, as is chrysocol l a, a copper s i l icate. Cuprite
(copper oxi de}, a reddi sh brawn mi neral , results from oxi ­
dati on of other copper mi neral s
Sulfdes are bl ack, purpl e, and yel ­
l ow. The oxi de and native copper ¸ - - '
are dul l red; the carbonates, bl ue¸. �

and g•een. C•y•ta • OfÜ fOfU+ � ��
Co. , U
Chalcocite (Cu2 S) i s a dark
metal l ic mi neral . H. 2. 5; Sp. Gr.
5. 5; streak, gray to bl ack. An i m­
portant ore, it i s found wi th the
other t hree mi neral s on thi s page.
Usual l y occurs i n vei n deposi ts;
crystal s rare.
Covellite ( CuS), found wi th
other copper sul fde ores, forms
t hi n deep bl ue pl ates, usual l y
tar nished to purpl e or bl ack. Not
as common or as rich in copper as
chal cocite. H. 1 . 5 to 2; Sp. Gr. 4. 6;
l uster, metal l ic. Occurs as crystal s
or i ncrustati ons.
Bornite (Cu5FeS4) i s cal l ed
peacock ore because of i t s usual l y
shi ny, pur pl e tarni sh. An i mportant
ore, found i n vei ns or scattered i n
i gneous rock. Crystal s rare. Bronze­
col ored when fresh. H. 3; Sp. Gr. 5;
streak, bl ack. May contai n smal l
amounts of gol d and si l ver.
Chalcopyrite (CuFeS2), the
common copper ore, i s a brassy,
al most gol den mi neral . May form
crystal s but i s more often found i n
massi ve form, i n most copper mi nes.
H. 3. 5 to 4; Sp. Gr. 4. 2; streak
greeni sh-bl ack; very bri tt l e.
Cupri te ( Cu20) forms by
weatheri ng of other ores and so is
more common near the surface.
Cubi c crystal s fai rl y common. Also
occurs as grai ns and i rregul ar
masses. H. 3. 5; Sp. Gr. 6; col or,
reddi sh- brown; streak, browni sh.
Chrysocol l a ( CuSi 03·2H2 0) i s
found i n vei ns and. masses wi th
quartz i n most copper mi nes i n the
Southwest. I ts chief val ue i s as a
gem when even-col ored and ri ch
i n quartz. Col or vari es, often bl ui sh
green; H. 2 to 4; Sp. Gr. 2. Crystal s
are rare.
Mal achite and Azurite are
usual l y found together. Mal achite
( CuCo3·Cu(OHh), more common
than azuri te, i s vari ous shades of
green. Azuri te ( 2CuC03·Cu( OHh) ,
which i s bl ue, forms crystal s more
often. Both occur in smooth or i rreg­
ul ar masses i n t he upper l evel s of
mi nes. Compact, deep-col ored
stones are cut as ornaments. H. (for
both) about 4; Sp. Gr. 3.7 to 4.
Seven Devi l s, Wash.
AZURI TE-Bi sbee, Ari z.
cut and pol i shed
Azurite and mal achi te mi xture
LEAD does occur as the nati ve metal , but
on l y rarel y. The most i mportant source of
l ead i s the mi neral gal ena, l ead sul fde
(PbS). I t has been known for centuri es, and l ead, smel ted
easi l y from it, has al so been used si nce anci ent ti mes.
Gal ena i s found i n vei ns, pockets, and repl acement de­
posits i n carbonate rocks. I t occurs wi th zi nc, copper, and
si l ver, often contai ni ng enough of the l atter metal s t o
make the ore doubl y val uabl e. About two-thi rds of U. S.
producti on comes from l ead-zi nc ores.
Gal ena i s a heavy, bri ttl e, si l very-gray mi neral whi ch
commonl y forms cubic crystal s and has perfect cubic cl eav­
age. I ts crystal s were used i n earl y radi o sets. H. 2. 5; Sp.
Gr. 7. 5; streak, l ead-gray. American deposits are i n
southeast Mi ssouri , the Tri -State (Mi ssouri - Kansas-Okl a­
homa) area, i n I l l i noi s and Wi sconsi n, and i n Col orado,
I daho, and Utah wi th si l ver ores. Europe, South A¬eri ca,
and Austral i a have commercial deposi ts al so.
cl eavage pl anes
leadvil l e, Col o.
Embreevi l l e, Tenn.
Ti ntic di strict, Utah
Over a dozen other l ead mi n­
eral s exi st, but of thi s number onl y
two have much i mportance as ores.
Both are secondary mi neral s de­
rived from gal ena by the sl ow
acti on of ai r and water. Silver­
beari ng gal ena is roasted to form l ead oxi de and sul fur
di oxi de gas, then reduced wi th carbon. Zi nc i s added.
The si l ver and zi nc ri se and are ski mmed of. The zi nc
i s removed by di sti l l ati on.
Cerussite (PbC03) forms l arge white or gray crystal s,
someti mes needl e-l i ke i n bundl es. I t al so occurs as mas­
si ve deposi ts or as l oose,
crystal l i ne crusts. H. 3; Sp. Gr.
6. 5; adamanti ne or si l ky l uster, white streak.
Anglesite (PbS04) i s often found wi th gal ena, as a
white or gray crust. H. 3, Sp. Gr. 6.4; streak, white.
GOLD is nei ther the rarest nor the most val uabl e metal ,
yet i t i s part of the ·foundati on of trade an d commerce,
and has many uses because of its metal l i c properti es.
Anci ents who found nati ve gol d pri zed i t, and gol d, beau­
tiful and easi l y worked, i s sti l l wi del y used i n j ewel ry.
A soft metal (H. 2. 5), i t i s someti mes al l oyed wi th copper
to harden i t and make it go further. Pure gol d i s 24 carats;
hence 1 4 carat gol d i s 1 4/24 or about 60 per cent gol d.
Gol d i s found i n quartz vei ns, someti mes wi t h pyrite. The
gol d may occur wi thi n t he pyrite itsel f-givi ng fool 's gol d
a real val ue. Gol d may occur i n metamorphi c rock and
occasional l y i n sedi ments where i t has been redeposited.
Onl y rarel y i s vi si bl e gol d found in gol d ore. I t usual l y
can not be seen at al l . Some of t he commerci al ores con­
tai n onl y 0. 1 ounce of gol d for each ton of rock.
Gol d i n
quartz wi th pyrite-Cal .
Xi pe, Gad af Spr i ng-
anci ent gol d wor k fr om Mexico
As gol d deposi ts are eroded,
the heavy gol d (Sp. Gr. 1 9. 3) i s
concentrated i n stream beds
where grai ns, fakes, and even
n uggets may be found by wash­
i ng away the l i ghter sand i n a
gol d pan or a s l ui ce. From these
pl acer deposi ts mi ners have gone
on to search for the ori gi nal vei ns
or "l odes. " Here the gol d may be
found as fecks i n the quartz and,
rarel y, as octahedral crystal s.
Gol d i s mal l eabl e; col or pal e to
gol den yel l ow; metal l i c l uster. I t
occurs as a compound wi th tel l u­
ri um in such mi neral s as syl van ite
and cal averi te, AuTe

Gol d may a l so be recovered from
other metal l ic ores.
GOLD CRYSTAL 0. 1 i n.
GOLD ORE-lead, S. Oak.
SI LVER someti mes occurs as nati ve si l ver i n l arge twi st­
i ng, branchi ng masses. Another i mportant source of si l ver
i s the sul fde (Ag2S)-argenti te. I n addi ti on, si l ver, l ead,
sul fur, and anti mony form a whol e seri es of rare, com­
pl ex mi neral s. Si l ver may be a val uabl e by-product i n
smel ti ng l ead, zi nc, and other metal s.
pure silver
1 0  fne
Argentite i s massi ve, or i t may
form cubi c crystal s. Found with
l ead, copper, and zi nc mi neral s.
Col or si l very when fresh, bl ack to
gray when tarni shed. H. 2. 5; Sp.
Gr. 7. 3; l uster, metal l i c.
sterling sliver
925 fne
coin sliver
900 fne
MERCURY, in the form of ci nnabar (HgS), i s frequentl y
a bri ght red, attractive mi neral found near hot spri ngs
and i n l ow-temperature vei ns-typi cal l y near vol can ic
rocks. Ameri can deposi ts, concentrated in the Si erra Ne­
vada and coast ranges, are more l i mited t han t hose of
Spai n. Ci nnabar forms hexagonal crystal s but i s usual l y
massive or occurs as scattered fecks. H. 2. 5; Sp. Gr. 8. 1 ;
col or vari es from bl ack to bri ght red; pri smati c cl eavage.
Mercury i s al so found as si l very gl obul es of nati ve mercury
in deposi ts of ci nnabar. It is used i n medi ci ne, in the
manufacture of thermometers and expl osi ves, and i n sev­
eral chemi cal i ndustri es.
I ron foats
I n mercury
Sp. Gr. 1 3. 6
At room tem­
perature mercury
is a l i quid
METEORITES are "shoot i ng stars"
whi ch reach t he earth. Same are
stony; some ar e i ron al l oyed wi th
ni ckel and traces of other metal s.
Meteors range from sand-grai n
si ze t o masses wei ghi ng tons. Sur­
face often pi tted, oxi di zed, or
rusty. I ron meteors are magneti c.
H. 4 to 5; Sp. Gr. 7. 5.
HEMATI TE ( Fe203) , the most i m­
portant i ron ore, contai ns about
70 per cent i ron. Great beds oc­
cur i n Mi n nesota, Mi chi gan, Wi s­
consi n, and adj acent Canada.
Hematite vari es from a r ed earthy
powder to a dark, compact, shi ny
mi neral . H. 1 to 6; Sp. Gr. about
5; streak, cherry red.
MAGNETITE ( Fe304) is t he onl y
bl ack ore t hat con be pi cked up
easi l y by a magnet. The hard ( H.
6) and heavy ( Sp. Gr. 5. 2) bl ack
crystal s or masses are found i n
bas i c i gneous rocks and metamor­
phosed sedi mentary rocks. A val ­
uabl e ore, though someti mes di f­
fcul t to mi ne. Streak: bl ack.
LIMONITE, an i ron ore wi t h wat er
( 2Fe203 · 3H20) . i s soft and earthy
(yel l ow och re) or i n compact,
smooth, dark, rounded mosses.
Never crystal l i ne. Li moni t e wi t h
about 60 per cent i ron forms a
seri es of very s i mi l ar i ron mi ner­
al s. H. 1 to 5. 5; Sp. Gr. about
3. 5; streak, yel l ow- brown.
MARCASI TE { Fe52) . someti mes
cal l ed wh ite pyri tes, is si mi l ar but
l i ghter and more bri ttl e than true
pyri tes. I t occurs i n radi ati ng and
coxcomb forms, as crustati ons and
concreti ons, i n cl ays, peat, and
coal . H. 6; Sp. Gr . 4. 8; crystal s
common. Speci mens crumbl e and
break up on standi ng.
PYRRHOTITE ( FeS) var i es i n com­
posi ti on but al ways contai ns an
excess of sul fur. Often found wi th
ni ckel (Pent l andi t e) and mi ned for
its ni ckel content. Occurs as crys·
tal s, thin pl ates, grai ns, or masses.
Col or, bronze ( pyrite i s brassy) ;
H. 4; Sp. Gr. 4. 6; streak, gray­
bl ack. Often magneti c.
PYRITE ( Fe52 ) or fool ' s gol d is
not l i ke gold at al l , but when tar­
ni shed may resembl e chal copyri te
(p. 32) . Used to obtai n sul fur
and someti mes as a source of i ron.
Crystal s are common; al so occu rs
as grai ns or in masses. H. 6; Sp.
Gr. about 5; streak, greeni sh­
bl ack; col or, l i ght brassy yel l ow.
SIDERITE ( FeC03) i s occasi onal l y
used as i r on or e but deposi ts are
usual l y smal l and i ron content i s
l ow-48 per cent. Crystal s com­
mon; more often i n masses whi ch
cl eave l i ke cal ci t e ( p. 64) . Col or,
yel l ow, gray, dar k brown; H.
about 4; Sp. Gr. 3. 8; streak,
white; l uster, pearl y.
ore scrap
l i mestone coke ai r bl ast
pi g i ron
Iron has l ong been man' s most
i mportant metal . Conti nuousl y op­
erati ng bl ast furnaces si mi l ar to the
one shown are used to produce pi g
i ron and ferro-al l oys. The furnace
i s l i ned wi th fre bri ck not bound
wi th mortar.
I ron ore i s general l y an oxi de,
as hemati te, l i moni te, or magnetite,
al though occasi onal l y a sul fde i s
used after conversi on to an oxi de
by roasti ng. The ore i s dumped i nto
the furnace al ong wi th coke, and
l i mestone f or fux. Bl asts of hot ai r
r oar i n fr om the si des, uni ti ng wi th
the carbon of the coke to reduce
the ore to metal l i c iron whi ch fows
to the bottom of the furnace, be­
neath the sl ag.
The furnaces are tapped regu­
l arl y. Most of the mol ten i ron i s
taken di rectl y to Bessemer or open
hearth converters to be made i nto
steel . Some i s run i nto mol ds, mak­
i ng pi g i ron.
Open- pi t mi ni ng, Mesabi Range.
bar magnet Canadi an n i ckel
NI CKEL ore, hard to smel t i n the earl y days of European
mi ni ng, was thought bewi tched and was spurned by mi n­
er s. Canada, wi t h the l argest deposi ts l ocated near Sud­
bury, Ontari o, produces about three fourths of the free
worl d' s ni ckel . Ni ccol ite ( NiAs) and mi l l eri te ( Ni S) are
mi nor ni ckel ores occurri ng wi th sul fde and arseni c ores
of cobal t and i ron. The pri nci pal ore of ni ckel ( pentl andi te)
occurs i n pyrrhoti te (p. 4 1 ) and i s si mi l ar to i t. Greeni sh
secondary or es are found near t he surface, where weath­
eri ng has al tered the pri mary mi neral s. Oregon and Mi s­
souri mi nes produce ni ckel ores i n the U. S. Ni ckel , a
magneti c metal , is wi del y used in al l oys, especi al l y wi th
i ron. Permal l oy and al ni co, both ni ckel al l oys, are used
i n maki ng magnets. German si l ver, another al l oy, i s used
for ki tchenware, ornaments, and el ectri cal heati ng wi re.
U. S. ni ckel s (5-cent pi eces) contai n about 75 per cent
copper and are not magneti c. Canadi an ni ckel s, wi th a
hi gher ni ckel content, are magneti c.
St. Louis, Mo.
Cobal t, Ontari o
near Sal mon, I dah o
0. 1 i n.
C RYSTAL F ORMS: c ubi c
0. 1 i n.
1 2- si ded
Sk ut t er ud, Norway
COBALT is chemically related to
nickel and iron, and its ores are
often found with nickel and iron
minerals. The Belgian Congo and
Northern Rhodesia are the largest
producers; there, the cobalt is
found with copper. There are also
large deposits of cobal t ores in the
Scandinavian countries, and in
Canada with nickel.
Cobaltite (CoAsS) and skutteru­
dite (CoNiFe)As3 (about the same
as smaltite) are the chief ores at
Cobalt, Ontario. Both crystallize in
the cubic system and look alike.
Cobaltite has a hardness of 5. 5;
color, silvery-metallic. Skutterudite,
which is similar, also contains vari­
able amounts of nickel and iron
and is classifed as an ore of which­
ever metal is dominant.
Cobalt is a heavy metal (Sp. Gr:
8. 9) used in hardening steels and
in other alloys. Carboloy, an al loy
of cobalt and tungsten carbide, is
used in cutting steel. Another ferro­
cobalt alloy makes permanent
magnets. Cobalt oxides are impor­
tant pigments in paints and cera­
mics, in which they are used to
produce shades of green, blue, yel­
low, and red. It is the source of
color in bl ue glass. Cobalt also has
other chemi cal uses.
TI N is seen daily as the thinner­
than-paper coating on the surface
of tin cans. This layer protects the
iron of the can from rusting. About
half the supply of tin goes into the
50 billion tin cans made yearly.
Tin is also an important constituent
of bearing alloys ( Babbitt metal)
and of type metal and solder. In its
oldest use, and still a major one, it
is alloyed with copper and some
zinc to make bronze.
Tin is essentially a one-ore metal.
The ore, cassiterite (Sn02), tin ox­
ide, contains almost 80 per cent tin.
It is commonly brown or black,
though occasionally red, gray, or
yellow. Streak, pale; luster, glassy
to adamantine. Cassiterite forms
crystals, but occurs more often as
fbrous masses (wood tin) or as
crusts or veins in granite and peg­
matite rock. It may be distinguished
from limonite by its high specifc
gravity ( 7. 0) . The Malay placer de­
posits of gravel and cassiterite peb­
bles are mined by huge dredges.
Small amounts occur in placer
deposits in Alaska, but most tin
comes from Malaya and Bolivia.
The Romans mined tin from placer
deposits in Cornwall, England.
sol der
Guanaj uata, Mexi co
t i n can
type met al
beari ngs
in cal ci te
Fr ankl i n, N. J.
crystal 0.2 i n.
ZI NC was used as an al l oy wi th copper to produce brass
l ong before it was known as a metal l i c el ement. Now
zi nc i s wi del y used i n coati ng i ron to prevent rust (gal va­
ni zed i ron), as wel l as in dry-cel l batteri es, pai nts, other
al l oys and i n chemi cal i ndustri es. Zi nc ores occur wi th l ead
and copper ores i n vei ns associ ated with i gneous rocks (p.
1 09) and as repl acement deposi ts i n carbonate rocks.
Sphal erite, zi ncbl ende, or bl ackj ack (ZnS) i s the
pri mary mi neral . Col or: yel l ow, brown, or bl ack; l uster:
resi nous. H. 3. 5-4. Sp. Gr. 4. Sphal erite has perfect cl eav­
age and breaks easi l y. Some speci mens are fuorescent;
others emi t fashes of l i ght when scratched i n a dark room.
Leadvi l l e, Col o.
Broken Hi l l , New Sout h Wal es
Fr ankl i n, N. J.
Zi ncite i s orange- red zi nc oxi de ( ZnO) , an ore at
Frankl i n Fur nace, N. J. Found wi t h frankl i ni te, a mi neral
si mi l ar to magnetite, contai ni ng zi nc and manganese.
Smi thsoni te ( ZnC03) forms as zi nc ores weather. I t
i s often a crystal l i ne crust but mostl y earthy and dul l .
Good speci mens are found i n t he Southwest.
Hemi morphite ( Zn4Si 2 0, (0Hk
H20), a zi nc s i l i cate wi t h water,
forms crystal s or earthy deposi ts.
Wi l l emite (Zn2 Si 04), transl u­
cent, vari es i n col or. Often fuo­
rescent (p. 22) .
Tessi en, Swi tzer l and
har dness 5
l vi gtut area, Greenl and
Kyani te, or cyanite ( AI 2
Si 05), i s usual l y found i n
schists and gnei sses. The
whi te to bl ue-gray or bl ack
crystal s are l ong and bl ade­
l i ke. Luster, gl assy to
pearl y; Sp. Gr. 3. 6; hard­
ness unusual -4. to 5 al ong
the crystal axi s, but 7 across.
Cryol ite ( Na3AI F6) is Õ
rare mi neral . Smal l amounts
have been found i n Col o­
rado, but it i s the one great
deposi t i n Greenl and that
was cruci al i n the hi story
of al umi num, maki ng the
smel ti ng of bauxi te possi ­
bl e. Now, arti fci al cryol ite
i s used. H. 2. 5; Sp. Gr. 3;
gl assy or greasy l uster.
pl i n­
ters fuse in candl e fame.
Corundum (AI 203) i s a
pri mary al umi num mi neral
found in metamorphosed
l i mestones and i n schists.
Hexagonal crystal s com­
mon. Corundum al so occurs
as dark granul es wi th mag­
netite - a form known as
emery and used as an
abrasi ve. H. 9-harder t han
any other common mi neral ;
Sp. Gr . 4; col or vari abl e.
Bauxi te, the ore of
al umi num, i s a group of re­
l ated oxi des with water of
hydrati on. Most abund­
ant i n warmer areas, i t
forms as al umi num-beari ng
rocks are weathered. Col or,
white-though often stai ned
brown or red by i ron oxi des.
H., vari abl e, 1 to 3; Sp. Gr. ,
2. 5. Named after the regi on
near Baux i n France where
i t occurs, Bauxite i s found
i n Arkansas ( mai n U. S. de­
posit) and in a bel t from
Al abama i nto Georgi a. The
Gui anas have ri ch deposi ts.
Kaol i n, a group of at
l east three mi neral s, al l al u­
mi num s i l i cates wi t h water
( H4AI 2Si 209), i s whi te and
scal y when pure. More of­
ten found i mpure as cl ay;
then i t i s earthy and col ­
ored by i mpuri ti es. Kaol i n
i s wi despread, t hough pure
deposits are l i mited. I t i s
essenti al i n cerami cs and
has many ot her uses. I t i s
al so a potenti al source of
metal l i c al umi num, though
commerci al s melt i ng meth­
ods are yet to be devel oped.
( hi ghl y magni fed) 49
y i el ds 2 l bs.
of a l umi na
3, l b.
of carbon
10 ki l owatt
hrs. current
ALUMI NUM, as a commerci al metal , has been known
for over a hundred years, but i ts wi de use has been much
more recent. Cl ays contai ni ng al umi num were used i n
maki ng pottery l ong before metal s were known. Pottery
and other cerami c products sti l l uti l i ze l arge quanti ti es
of al umi num mi nera l s ( p. 1 50) . Al umi num i s a consti tuent
of fel ds pars, mi cas, garnets, corundum, and cryol ite, but
on l y the l atter has ever been an al umi num ore. Al umi num
ores are usual l y secondary-weathered and al tered prod­
ucts of these mi neral s.
Al umi num, maki ng up over 8 per cent of the earth' s
crust, i s more abundant than i ron, but workabl e deposi ts
are l i mi ted. Bauxite, consi sti ng of hydrated oxides of
al umi num, i s the pr i nci pal ore. I n processi ng, the 50 to
70 per cent al umi num oxi de, cal l ed al umi na, i s frst ex­
tracted, then di ssol ved i n huge vats of mol ten cryol i te.
Al umi na i s reduced to metal l i c al umi num by carbon el ec­
trodes carryi ng a strong el ectri c current. I t col l ects at the
bottom of the vat. About a mi l l i on tons a year are pro­
duced, mai nl y for
the transportati on
and constructi on
i ndustri es.
Pouri ng mol ten
al umi num
CHROMI TE-Lancaster, Po. CROCOI TE-near Du ndas , Tasman i a
CHROMI UM, a bright sil very metal , has become famil ­
iar in the flashy trim on automobi les and househol d wares.
It is often used over a nickel undercoat as a non-rusting
plating on iron and steel . Chromium has onl y one ore,
though it occurs in about a dozen mineral s.
Chromite (FeCr2 04), the chromium ore, occurs widel y,
but workable deposits in the United States are limited
largel y to California and Oregon. Commercial deposits
occur al so in Africa, the Philippines, Turkey, and New
Caledonia. Chromite occurs in basic igneous rocks or in
metamorphic rocks formed from them. Chromite ( H. 5. 5;
Sp. Gr. 4. 7) i s metallic black or brownish; streak, dark
brown. Sometimes sl ightly magnetic because of its iron
content, it occurs in veins or in widespread granular
masses, frequently with a coating of serpentine.
Crocoi te (PbCr04 ), a rare but handsome mineral , is
formed when chrome chemical s encounter lead. Attrac­
tive crystals of lead chromate then devel op.
5 1
MANGANESE is widely found, often with iron, barium,
cobalt, and zinc. The most common ores are secondary,
formed by the action of air and water on manganese sil ­
icates and carbonates. Deposits are common i n bogs and
lakes. Manganese is used to toughen steel for machinery,
rails, and armaments. Russia, India, South Africa, and
Brazil have most of the ores. U. S. deposits are in Tennes­
see, Virginia, Arkansas, Arizona, and Montana.
Rhodoni te (MnSi03 ) -pink, yell ow, or brownish-is
best known from Franklin Furnace, N. J. H. 5. 5 to 6. 5;
Sp. Gr. 3. 5; translucent; streak, white. Large, fattened
crystals quite common. Prismatic cleavage.
Rhodochrosite (MnC03 ), softer than rhodonite (H. 4) ,
rarely forms large crystals. Translucent with glassy luster;
color pinkish, as in rhodonite. Massive, in veins or as crusts.
Typical calcite cl eavage (rhombohedral ).
Psi l omel ane (Mn02 · H20) appears often with barium
and iron. Soft, dull, noncrystalline (see manganite, be­
low), but may form hard (H. 5) rounded or stringy masses.
Soft, impure mixtures are called wad.
Mangani te¿ MnO(OH), is often in prismatic crystal s
or fbrous masses. H. 4; Sp. Gr. 4. 3; streak, red-brown.
Pyrol usi te (Mn02 ), principal manganese ore, is
earthy, powdery, granular, or fibrous. Hardness varies
from 1 or 2 up to 6 in rare crystal s. Sp. Gr. 5; streak,
bl ack. Forms fernlike crusts (dendrites) along cracks or
as inclusions in moss agate. These are not fossi l s.
Pyrol usi te dendri tes in quart z Cal iforni a
RHODON I TE-Fronkl i n, N. J.
New Mexi co
on dol omi t e-Pri nceton, I owa
Butte, Mont .
I l fel d, Harz, Germany
I ronwood, Mi ch.
URANI UM (discovered in 1 789 and isolated as an ele­
ment about 1 842) is now prized as a source of atomic
energy. It occurs in some 50 minerals, most of them
rare. The main ores are uraninite and secondary miner­
als formed from it by weathering. Actually, uranium min­
erals are widespread in granites and pegmatites. Speci­
mens may be collected wherever these igneous rocks are
exposed. Commercial deposits are another matter. Ura­
nium prospecting requires time, patience, and skills which
few amateur mineralogists possess.
Radi ati ons di scl ose urani um.
Urani nite (U02 ) i s steel black,
opaque, hard ( H. 5. 5) , and heavy;
Sp. Gr. 9 to 9. 5 for pure specimens.
Streak from gray to brown to black;
crystals rare. More common is
pi tchbl ende, a form of uraninite
which occurs in massive, fbrous or
rounded masses.
North Car ol i na
thwest Col orado
Uraninite alters to an orange or red gummy, waxy mineral
of variable composition, called gummite.
Carnoti te (K2 ( U02)2 (VO. k3H2 0) is a complex min­
eral with vanadium and uranium. I t occurs in weathered
sedimentary rocks as streaks or earthy yellow grains.
Common in the Southwest, sometimes on petrifed wood.
Uranophane (CaU2 Si 201 1 · 7H20) is found with uran­
inite as clusters of tiny yellow, needle-like crystals. It is
widely distributed, but never common.
Autuni te ( Ca( U02 )2 ( PO• k 1 0- 1 2H20) is another
secondary uranium mineral. Note the greenish, pearly
flecks. Autunite is common in small
amounts. This and most other urani -
um minerals fuoresce strongly under
ultraviolet light. Radiation from
these minerals can also be detected
by the use of a Geiger counter
or a scintillometer.
Ur ani um occurrences
luna Cou nt, N. Mex.
Vi sal i a, Cal .
Tucson1 Ar i z.
Cl i max, Col o.
Wol framite(Fe, Mn) W04 i s O
mi neral of quartz vei ns and peg­
matites. It is found i n t he form of
tabul ar or pri smati c crystal s; dark
brown or bl ack wi th submetal l i c
l uster; H. 5. 5; Sp. Gr . 7. 5; brittl e.
An ore of tungsten (wol fram) ­
i mportant i n l amp f l aments and
i n steel - al l oy cutt i ng tool s.
Scheel i te (CaW04) , another
ore of tungsten. H. 5; Sp. Gr. 6.
Gl assy, someti mes transparent;
· -streak, white. Col or vari abl e, but
l i ght. Found i n quartz vei ns or at
contact of i gneous rocks and
l i mestone. I t i s the most i mportant
U. S. tungsten ore.
Vanadi nite ( Pb5 (V04hCI ) i s
an attractive, fai rl y wi despread
vanadi um mi neral , but not an i m­
portant ore. H. 3; Sp. Gr. 7. Va­
nadi ni te i s a secondary mi neral of
l ead areas. Carnotite (p. 55) i s a
better source of vanadi um, used
i n al l oy steel s.
Mol ybdeni te (Mo52) i s a
mi neral found in pegmati tes and
vei ns. I t i s soft ( H. 1 . 5), metal l i c
and opaque; streak, bl ue-gray.
Occurs as fecks, or tabul ar crys­ s. Mol ybdenum is essenti al in
tool -steel al l oys.
Col umbi te ( Fe, Mn) Cb2 06 and
tantal ite ( Fe, Mn) Ta206 are ores
of rare metal s. Actual l y, they
are a seri es of oxi des i ncl udi ng
i r on and manganese. The mi neral
i s col umbi te when t he amount of
col umbi um ( n i obi um) i s hi gh, and
tantal ite when i t has more tanta­
l um, whi ch i s used as an al l oy i n
surgi cal i nstruments. Col umbi um
al l oys are used i n rocket engi nes.
The mi neral s are dark brown or
bl ack, crystal l i ne ( often twi nned) .
H. 6; Sp. Gr. 5. 5 to 8; usual l y
opaque wi th a submetal l i c l uster.
They form i n pegmati te, often
wi th ti n and t ungsten mi neral s.
Beryl · ( Be3AI 2 (Si 03) 6) i s an
ore of beryl l i um as wel l as a gem
stone ( pp. 84-85). The metal i s
used i n al l oys of copper and i n
atomi c research. I t i s al most as
l i ght as magnesi um.
Monazite, H. 5; Sp. Gr. 5, i s
a compl ex mi neral contai ni ng
thori um and a number of other
"rare earth" metal s. I t occurs as
yel l ow resi nous grai ns or as l arger
crystal s i n pegmati te and i n cer­
tai n sand deposi ts in southeastern
Uni ted States. An even greater
number of "rare earths" are found
i n samarski te, whi ch occurs
rarel y in pegmati tes.
Bedfor d, N. Y.
BERYL-Ger many
Yorktown, N. Y.
Spr uce Pi ne, N. C. 57
Rut i l e, Yor k Co. , Po.
Gem rut i l e
(syntheti c)
I l meni te, Cu mber l and, R. I .
Ti tani um al l oys
used i n rockets
TI TANI UM i s a metal with a future and its mi neral s wi l l
be of i ncreasi ng i mportance. Li ght wei ght and a hi gh
mel t i ng poi nt give i t i mportance i n rocket constructi on.
Now used i n steel al l oys, as a cutti ng tool (ti tani um car­
bi de), and i n white poi nts.
Ti tani um i s abundant, maki ng up 0. 6 per cent of the
earth' s crust. I ts ores ore found pri nci pal l y i n southeastern
United States and Arkansas, and i n l n,i a, Norway, France,
Swi tzer l and, and Brazi l .
Ruti l e ( Ti 02) has var i ed forms. Most commonl y it i s
bl ack, often i n I orge pri smati c crystal s. H. 6; Sp. Gr. 4. 2;
Streak, l i ght brown. Found i n i gneous and metamorphi c
rocks. Needl e- l i ke crystal s ore found as i ncl usi ons i n r uti ­
l oted quartz. Syntheti c ruti l e i s used i n ri ngs.
I l menite ( FeTi 03) i s the more common ore of titan i um
found i n many magneti te deposi ts; associ ated wi th
gnei sses and metamorphi c rocks general l y. Found as thi n
sheets, fecks, tabul ar crystal s, groi ns, or massi ve. Metal l i c
bl ock i n col or; opaque. Streak from bl ack to reddi sh­
brown. H. 5 to 6; Sp. Gr. 4. 5.
Stevens Co. , Wash.
cl eavage fragment
Mon roe Co. , N.Y.
MAGNESI UM, l i ghter t han al umi num, i s the ei ghth most
common el ement in the earth' s crust. I t has become a
metal of maj or i mportance-its al l oys fnd wi de use i n
ai r pl anes, i n other sheet metal products, and i n cast i ng.
I t s t wo pri nci pal or es are magnesi te and dol omi te. Mag­
nesi um i s al so manufactured from sea water-260,000
gal l ons yi el di ng one ton of the metal . The magnesi um
chl ori de i s treated wi t h l i me from oyster shel l s. Then the
magnesi um i s extracted by el ectrol yti c acti on.
Magnesite (MgC03) , usual l y dul l whi te, massi ve or
granul ar, someti mes gl assy, rarel y occurs as crystal s. H. 4;
Sp. Gr. 3. large deposits i n Washi ngton and Cal ifor ni a.
Dol omite (MgCa( C03h) i s descri bed as a nonmetal l i c
mi neral ( p. 65), but recentl y i t has come i nto use as an ore
of magnesi um-j ust as t he c l ay mi neral s may eventual l y
become ores of al umi num. Three l i ght metal s-al umi num,
magnesi um, and l it hi um-are of growi ng i mportance.
Spi nel , a magnesi um- al umi num oxi de, is a wel l - known
gem mi neral ( p. 85) whi ch i s found mai nl y i n Ceyl on,
Bur ma, and Thai l and.
Shi koku, Jopon
STI BNI TE, (Sb2 S3) , found wi th py­
rite, gal ena, and arseni c mi neral s,
is t he onl y common anti mony ore.
I t is more typi cal of l ow-tempera­
ture vei ns. Steel - gray, metal l i c; H.
2; Sp. Gr. 4. 5. Crystal s common,
often found bent . Ant i mony i s used
i n type metal , pewter, and other
a l l oys. Nati ve ant i mony i s al so
found as a mi neral -but rarel y.
ARSENI C is a semi - metal used i n al l oys. I ts poisonous
compounds are used i n sprays and i nsecti ci des.
Real gar (AsS), the s i mpl est ore, forms i n l ow-temper­
ature vei ns as crusts, grains, fl ecks,
or massi ve deposi ts.
Crystal s are rare. H. 2; Sp. Gr. 3. 5; resi nous l uster; col or
and streak both orange-red. Real gar s l owl y breaks dow
on exposure to l i ght to form orpi ment.
Orpi ment (As2 S3), often found wi th real gar or sti b­
ni te, i s usual l y massive, though someti mes sheetl i ke. Crys­
tal s rare. H. 1 . 5; Sp. Gr. 3. 5; perfect cl eavage. Speci mens
become du l l on exposure to l i ght.
Arsenopyrite (FeAsS) forms i n hi gh-temperature
vei ns and pegmati tes. Occurs massi ve or as crystal s. Si l ­
very, metal l i c; H. 6; Sp. Gr. 6. An ore of arsen i c.
Manhattan, Nev.
Manhattan, Ne·
NONMETALLI C MI NERALS form a l arge gr oup of mi n­
eral s whi ch contai n no metal or are nat used for the metal s
they contai n. Gems and rock-formi ng mi neral s are i n sep­
arate secti ons. Even a few metal l i c mi neral s ( pp. 3 1 -60)
bel ong i n the nonmetal l ic group, for whi l e they contai n
metal s, t hey ar e not ores. The nonmetal l i c mi neral s ar e of
great i mportance - for i nsul ati on, as f l l ers, fi l ters, and
fl uxes, and i n t he cerami c and chemi cal i ndustri es. The
worl d' s most common mi neral s bel ong i n t hi s group.
SULFUR (S) i s a nonmetal l ic mi neral el ement found i n
vol cani c rocks, ar ound hot spri ngs, and i n sedi mentary
"domes" ( p. 1 45) wi th sal t, gypsum, anhydri te, and l i me­
stone. I t i s yel l ow ( someti mes br own) , waxy or resi nous,
weak and bri tt l e. H. 1 . 5 to 2. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 0. Sul fur' s l ow
mel t i ng poi nt ( 1 1 0- 1 20°C) ai ds in mi ni ng i t from under­
gr ound deposi ts. Superheated water is pumped down
l arge pi pes, mel t i ng the sul fur; compressed ai r then forces
the mel ted sul fur out. Sul fur i s used i n paper maki ng and
as a source of sul furi c aci d.
GRAPHI TE is one of the worl d' s softest mi neral s. Di amond
i s the hardest. Both are car bon (C) . Graphite occurs i n
i gneous and metamor phi c rocks-schists and marbl es. I t
may for m when hi gh temperature vei ns cut coal deposi ts,
and an artifci al form i s made in el ectric furnaces. Graph­
ite is earthy, or forms scal y or faky crystal s wi th a metal ­
l i c l uster, greasy and fexi bl e. H. 1 ; Sp. Gr. 2. 0. Commer­
cial deposi ts i n thi s country are l i mited to three mi nes i n
Al abama, Texas, and Rhode I sl and; these cannot compete
with the ri ch deposi ts of Korea, Ceyl on, Mexi co, and Mad­
agascar. Graphi te i s used for dry and wet l ubri cati on and
f or el ectri cal and chemi cal purposes I ts best- known us e i s
as "l ead" i n l ead penci l s, where i t i s usual l y mixed wi th
other materi al s to gi ve vari ous degrees of hardness. Graph­
i te i s a strategi c mi neral . I ts l atest use i s as a moderator to
sl ow down neutrons i n atomi c pi l es.
I cel and Spar i s a trans­
parent cal ci te whi ch has the
opti cal property of bend­
i ng l i ght two ways, maki ng
words appear doubl e.
Dogtooth Spar, a com­
mon crystal l i ne for m, wi t h
crystal s l ong and poi nted.
Crystal s from Jopl i n, Mo. ,
are wel l known.
Twi nned Crystal s of
cal ci te, growi ng together
as shown above ( l eft) are
very common. Thi s i s a typi ­
col spectacul ar form.
Stal actites and Sta­
l agmites form i n caves by
dri ppi ng water. Cal ci te a l so
forms in t hi n sheets or dra­
peri es from the roof.
Death Val l ey, Cal .
Badl ands of South Dakota
CALCI TE (CaC03) , most common and wi despread of the
carbonate mi neral s, is i nterest i ng because of i ts many
and vari ed crystal forms. Cal ci te occurs i n a number of
structural forms and frequentl y grades i nto dol omite ( p.
65) . Great masses of cal cite occur i n l i mestones ( pp. 1 26-
1 27); sma l l crystal masses are present i n rock open i ngs,
whi l e rare, transparent crystal s occur as I cel and spar,
val ued for use i n range fnders and pol ari zi ng mi cro­
scopes. Cal ci te al so occurs as a vei n mi neral i n al most
al l rocks. Crystal s are common. H. 3; Sp. Gr. 2. 7. Cl eav­
age: perfect, rhombohedral . Most cal ci te i s opaque,
s l i ghtl y col ored by i mpuri ti es; yel l ow, orange, brown, and
green shades occur. Cal cite i s often fuorescent.
Other Forms of Cal ci te
Nai l - head Spar: fattened, rhombohedral crystal s, often
in c l usters.
Travert i ne: a general term for massi ve, noncrystal l i ne
cal ci te as found i n caves. Opaque, often col ored.
Tufa: porous, whi te travert i ne from spri ng deposi ts.
Chal k: white, soft, compact shel l s of s mal l sea an i mal s.
Al abaster: a sol i d, banded traverti ne used for ornaments.
See al so gypsum (p. 66).
Onyx: an al abaster, often cl earer and more transl ucent.
Sati n-spar: fbrous, s i l ky for m. Thi s name al so appl i es to
a form of gypsum. Cal ci te bubbl es i n hydrochl ori c aci d.
Si ci l y
I t al y Cu mber l and, Engl and
ARAGONI TE is chemi cal l y the same as cal ci te ( CaC03)
but i s l ess common and crystal l izes i n the orthorhombi c
system. I t is s l i ghtl y harder and heavi er-H. 3. 5 to 4; Sp.
Gr. 2. 9. Aragoni te does not cl eave as di sti nctl y as cal ci te,
al though i t, too, bubbl es strongl y i n di l ute hydrochl or i c
aci d. Aragonite i s usual l y whi te, gray, or cream. The
mother-of-pear l l i ni ng of sea shel l s i s ar agonite. Fl os
ferri i s a branchi ng growth of pure whi te aragonite i n
mi nes and caves. Coral , formed by pl ants and ani mal s
i n warm seas, i s al so aragon i te. Preci ous coral i s val ued
for gem and ornamental use.
DOLOMI TE (MgCa( C03 ) 2 ) occurs i n l arge bedded de­
posits and as vei ns i n other sedi ments. There are exten­
si ve deposi ts i n the Austri an Tyrol -the Dol omi te Al ps.
Dol omi te i s both a rock and a mi neral ( p. l 09). The best
mi neral speci mens come from vei ns or l i mestone cavi ti es,
and i ncl ude crystal s wi th curved faces. Dol omite i s harder
than cal ci te ( H. 3. 5 to 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 8) , but si mi l ar i n crystal
form and cl eavage. Reacts sl owl y wi th hydroch l ori c aci d.
White or vari col ored. Wi del y di stri buted.
Mexi co
bul l County, Ohi o
GYPSUM i s a common mi neral . I t
i s a sedi mentary rock precipitated
from evaporati ng sea water under
dry or ari d conditi ons. Massive
beds of gypsum are found in over
a dozen states and in Mari ti me
Canada. When mi ned, gypsum i s
the basi s of a mul ti mi l l i on-dol l ar i n­
dustry produci ng pai nts, pl aster,
pl asterboard, ti l e, and other con­
structi on material s. A smal l amount
of gypsum i n Portl and cement
keeps it from setti ng too fast.
Gypsum was known and used i n
Europe for centuri es. I t was fi rst
burned in open fires, l ater in ki l ns.
Heati ng gypsum drives out part of
the water; the burned gypsum,
ground to a white powder, i s known
as pl aster of Paris, as it was fi rst
made near there. When moi stened,
pl aster of Pari s absorbs water
agai n and hardens as gypsum rock,
so it is used in maki ng pl aster casts
and in pl asteri ng and as an i ngre­
di ent of many prepared construc­
ti on materi al s
Crushed gypsum is used i n agri ­
cul ture, bei ng added to the soi l as
"l and pl aster." I t ai ds the growth of
peas and neutral i zes al kal i ne soi l s.
Over 8 mi l l i on tons are mi ned an­
nual l y i n thi s country-about one­
thi rd of the worl d producti on.
Gypsum is a col or l ess or white
mi neral , someti mes ti nted by i ron
or other i mpuri ti es. I t i s cal ci um sul ­
fate, wi th water (CaS04·2H20).
H. 2, Sp. Gr. 2. 3. Luster i s pearl y,
gl assy-someti mes fbrous. Streak,
whi te. I ts crystal s have two cl eav­
age pl anes-one perfect. Does not
bubbl e i n col d hydrochl ori c aci d,
but wi l l di ssol ve i n hot.
Most gypsum occurs i n bedded
deposi ts. A compact massi ve form
known as al abaster (a name al so
appl i ed to s i mi l ar- l ooki ng cal ci te)
i s carved for or naments. Crystal l i ne
gypsum (sel eni te) occurs i n caves
and l i mestone cavi ti es-al so i n
c l ays, shal es, and some sands.
Crystal s may grow several feet
l ong, and may be twi nned or
Anhydrite ( CaS04) i s chemi ­
cal l y si mi l ar to gypsum, but does
not contai n water. I t is found in crys­
tal l i ne masses, t hough good crystal s
are r ar e. Someti mes i t i s fbrous,
granul ar or scal y. Col or whi te to
gray; streak, whi te. Luster, gl assy
or pearl y, often transl ucent, rarel y
transparent. H. 3 to 3. 5; Sp. Gr.
2. 9. I t i s often found with gypsum,
and may a l ter to gypsum by ab­
sorbi ng wat er. Al so occurs i n sal t
beds and wi t h sul fur i n "domes. "
Grand Rapi ds, Mi ch.
Mammoth Cave, Ky.
HALI TE or common sal t is sodi um ch l ori de ( NaCI ) . It has
been used si nce prehi stori c days, and there i s no substitute
for i t in nutri ti on or i n i ndustry. Al l hal i te comes from the
sea. layers of rock sal t mark areas where seas dri ed up i n
anci ent t i mes. I n many pl aces sal t i s sti l l made by evap­
orati ng sea water i n shal l ow basi ns.
Hal ite i s col orl ess when pure, but i s usual l y di scol ored
some shade of yel l ow, red, gray, or brown. I t i s trans­
parent to t rans l ucent, bri ttl e, and wi th excel l ent cl eavage
paral l el to its crystal faces. H. 2 to 2. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 3. I t
occurs i n granul ar, fbrous, or crystal l i ne masses, easi l y
recogni zed by the cubi c crystal s and by the mi neral 's
fami l i ar taste. Hal i te is rarel y pure. It occurs wi th other
sal ts of cal ci um and magnesi um.
GLAUIERITE, O sul fate of sodi um
and cal ci um, occurs around mi n­
eral &pritgs and wi th other evap­
orl tn. H. 2- '1 white to gray,
al ifomf a
SALTPETER, O fer I I zer, i s iOch um
ni trate ( NaN08) . I t occurs i n Chi l e
an d our Southw, wi th msum,
h al ite, on glauberite.
Sal t and Rel ated Mi neral s are part of the "al kal i "
whi ch makes s ome western s oi l s di fcul t to us e f or agr i ­
cul ture. Thes e mi ner al s f or m under semi - ari d t o ar i d con­
di ti ons, often wi t h bor ax ( p. 70) . Hal i te i s mi ned by shaft
mi ni ng or by pumpi ng water i nto the deposi t and l ater
pumpi ng out the bri ne. I n puri fi cati on, potassi um and mag­
nesi um sal ts, br omi ne, and i odi ne are obtai ned as by­
products. The hal i te i s recrystal l i zed, becomi ng very pure
i n t he process. I n addi ti on to its use i n food and as a pre­
servati ve, sal t i s essenti al i n chemi cal i nd ustri es, i n the
ranufacture of soda ash for gl ass
products, and i n soapmaki ng and
metal l urgy. Ch l ori ne f r om s al t i s
used as a bl each and i n water
puri fcati on.
"Twenty-mul e team" haul i ng borax-Death Val l ey, CaL
BORAX, ori gi nal l y obtai ned from deposi ts of vol cani c
ori gi n, now comes mostl y from bri nes and dry l ake beds
where ground water has concentrated the borax. Used i n
maki ng gl ass and enamel s and i n chemi cal i ndustri es.
Borax, sodi um borate wi th
ten parts of water, occurs i n
al kal i l akes or as a crust on the
desert soi l . Once haul ed i n
twenty- mul e teams fr om the
Death Val l ey regi on. Whi te to
gray; H. 2, Sp. Gr. 2. 7; gl assy.
Esmeral da
Kerni te is chemical l y si mi ­
l ar to borax but contai ns onl y
four parts of water. I t is often
col orl ess and transparent. H.
2. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 0. Streak wh1 te,
l uster gl assy.
Kramer, Cal .
southern Cal i forni a
Col emanite i s a cal ci um
borate wi th fve parts of water.
Pri smati c crystal s common. Col ­
or , whi te. H. 4 t o 4. 5; Sp. Gr .
2. 3. Streak, white. luster, gl assy
to dul l . Often found in white,
chal ky or hard, gl assy masses.
1 vage
J ment­
o hedral
t wi n crystal s
FLUORI TE i n commerci al quanti ti es occurs i n both sedi ­
mentary and i gneous rocks. Vei ns of fuori te ( CaF2 ) wi t h
quartz or cal ci te someti mes contai n l ead, copper, and zi nc
mi neral s. We are t he worl d' s l argest producer of f uor i te,
most of i t mi ned i n I l l i noi s, Kentucky, Col orado, an d New
Mexi co. F l uori te i s used t o produce a fl ui d sl ag i n steel ­
maki ng and i n smel t i ng ores. I t i s used i n maki ng hi gh-test
gasol i ne, Freon, and many other chemical products. Fl u­
orite is a most attracti ve mi ner al of vari ed col ors-whi te,
bl ue, green, and vi ol et. Transparent to transl ucent. H. 4;
Sp. Gr. 3. 2. Streak, whi te; gl assy
l uster. Good octahedral cl eavage.
Crystal s and fne cl eavage frag
ments make attracti ve speci mens
for the col l ector. Often fuorescent
i n ul travi ol et l i ght.
7 1
BARI TE or barytes (BaS04) is a sul fate of bari um, a si l ­
very metal . It is pl aced wi th the nonmetal l i cs because it
is rarel y a source of the metal and is wi del y used other­
wi se. Bari te occurs i n many ways, occasi onal l y as l arge
transparent or transl ucent crystal s; somet i mes as crystal ­
l i ne vei n fi l l i ngs, wi t h fl uori te or cal cite, or wi th metal l ic
ores. Large concreti ons are found in South Dakota and
smal l er rose-shaped ones ( "desert roses") i n t he sands
of Okl ahoma.
Barite i s a f ai r l y soft ( H. 2. 5 to 3. 5) but heavy ( Sp. Gr.
4. 5) mi neral , col orl ess to white, yel l ow, gray, and brown.
Luster, gl assy, someti mes pear l y; streak, whi te. Some­
ti mes gr anul ar or earthy. Crystal s
are common, often broad and
thi ck. Barite i s us ed i n maki ng l i tho­
pone for pai nt, as an aid i n wel l
dr i l l i ng, i n maki ng gl ass, as a fl l er
i n gl ossy paper, and i n cerami cs.
i n cal cite
Ontari o, Canada
APATI TE gets i ts odd name from the Greek word mean­
i ng "t o decei ve" because i t s var i ed f or ms and col ors
caused ear l y mi neral ogi sts to confuse it wi t h Q hal f-dozen
other mi neral s. Apati te may be transparent, trans l ucent,
or opaque, wi th a col or t hat vari es from white to brown,
green, yel l ow, or vi ol et. Apati te occurs i n vei ns wi th
quartz, fel dspar, and i ron ores. Hexagonal crystal s are
common, some si mi l ar to gem mi neral s. Apati te is a phos­
phate of cal ci um, usual l y wi th some fl uori ne ( Ca5 ( CI , F) ­
( PO.) J ) . H. 5; Sp. Gr. 3. 2; l uster, gl assy; streak, whi te.
Outstandi ng commerci al deposits are present i n Ontari o
and Quebec, Canada. Phosphate rock, used for ferti l i zer,
contai ns mi neral s rel ated to apa-
t i t e. A t hi n chi p of apati te wi l l col or
a gas fame orange ( 1 ) . When
wet wi th sul furi c aci d (cauti on!) i t
col ors the fame a pal e bl ui sh-green
(2) due to l i berated phosphorus.
St. lawrence County, N. Y.
St. lawrence County, N. Y.
TALC may form when magnesi um
ri ch rocks are al tered, especi al l y by
heated waters. Hence tal c occurs
as a secondary mi neral wi th ser­
penti ne ( p. 1 07), chl ori te ( p. 1 06),
schists, and dol omite. I t i s found i n
irregul ar deposits i n metamorphi c
rocks. Tal c has a variety of uses
rangi ng from cosmeti cs (tal cum
powder) t o fl l ers i n pai nt, i nsecti ­
ci des, rubber, and paper. The use
depends on the form i n whi ch the
tal c occurs-thi s may be massi ve,
fbrous, or soft.
Soapstone i s rock usual l y ri ch
i n tal c. Steatite i s a massi ve tal c,
usual l y of hi gh grade. Tal c i s fre­
quentl y sheetl i ke (fol iated) or
granul ar. As a mi neral , it i s one of
the softest ( H. 1 to 1 . 5), Sp. Gr. 2. 7.
Fol iated tal c has good basal cl eav­
age and breaks somewhat l i ke
mi ca, though the scal es are not
el asti c. Transl ucent to opaque; col ­
or vari es from white to greeni sh,
yel l ow, or pi nk. Pure tal c has a
greasy, soapy feel and when pow­
dered acts as a l ubri cant.
Tal c and soapstone were known
i n anci ent ti mes. Eski mos carved
l amps and pots from it, as did the
Mound Bui l ders. The Egypti ans,
Babyl oni ans, and Chi nese al so
made use of it.
ASBESTOS is the name gi ven to
a group of mi neral s di ferent i n
ori gi n but of si mi l ar appearance.
Ori gi nal l y the term was appl i ed to
fbrous mi nera l s cl osel y rel ated to
amphi bol e (p. 1 00). Of the fbrous
amphi bol es, croci dol ite or bl ue
asbestos i s best known. Mountai n
l eather i s a heavy, matted f or m; its
fbers are usual l y short and bri ttl e.
The best- known source of asbes­
tos i s a form of serpenti ne ( p. 1 07)
known as chrysoti l e. I t i s si l ky,
fbrous, and strong. Most chrysoti l e
comes f r om the famous Quebec and
Vermont deposits, where i t honey­
combs the serpenti ne rock. Here
the cross fbers vary from Y to 3
i nches in l engt h. The l ong fbers are
i n short suppl y and are val ued
very hi gh l y. The Uni ted States uses
about 50 per cent of al l asbestos
produced; 90 per cent of thi s comes
from Canada.
Chrysot i l e frbers are so fne t hey
can be divi ded i nto al most i nvi si bl e
strands. They spi n wel l and are
used in woven i nsul ati on and for
freproofng. The fbers do not burn
and they conduct heat very sl owl y.
Shorter fbers are mixed wi th gyp­
sum to make asbestos board. Si ght
i denti fcati on of chrysot i l e i s easy­
no other mi neral is t hi s fbrous.
Quebec, Can.
Thetford, Quebec, Can.
common crystal forms
quartz ra·di a crystal quartz pri sm si l i ca cruci bl e
QUARTZ i s one of the most common mi ner al s i n t he
earth' s crust. As t he chemi cal s i l ica ( Si 02) i t for ms an
i mportant part of most i gneous rocks. Some sandstones
are al most 1 00 per cent quartz, and so are such meta­
mor phi c rocks as quartzi te. At di ferent temperatures
quartz crystal l i zes i n di ferent ways. For thi s reason i ts
cryst al structure i s often an ai d i n determi ni ng the tem­
perature condi ti ons under whi ch a rock formed, si nce
one vari ety, al pha-quartz, changes to another, beta­
quartz, at 573°C.
Quartz occurs i n crystal l i ne masses and, when condi ­
ti ons permi t, forms hexagonal crystal s ( pp. 78-79) . Doubl y
termi nated quartz crystal s (often found i n l i mestone cav­
i ti es) have such l ocal names as Herki mer di amonds.
larger crystal s are found l i ni ng cavi ti es; t hey are often
cut as gem stones and are sol d as rock crystal . Brazi l i s
famous for i ts deposi ts of crystal quartz. Quartz al so oc­
curs i n a form i n whi ch the crystal s are of mi croscopi c
si ze and hence not apparent ( pp. 80-8 1 ) . Si l i ca combi ned
wi th wat er i s opal ( p. 82) .
Quartz is someti mes col orl ess but more commonl y whi te,
someti mes yel l ow, brown, pi nk, green, bl ue, or bl ack. I ts
l uster i s gl assy i n crystal l i ne forms, waxy or greasy i n
chal cedony. H. 7; Sp. Gr. 2. 6; streak, whi te; bri ttl e wi th
conchoi dal fracture. Quartz is best recogn i zed by i ts
hardness, l uster, and occurrence, and by i ts crystal form
when evi dent. Many ki nds of quartz are val ued as gems
and are cl assed as semi preci ous stones.
When crysta l quartz i s cut at an exact angl e to i ts axi s,
pressure on i t generates a mi nute el ectri cal charge. Thi s
efect makes quartz of great usef ul ness i n radi o, tel evi si on,
and radar. The suppl y of natural radi o quartz i s s o l i mi ted
that methods for growi ng quartz crystal s i n the l aboratory
have been devel oped. Quartz transmits s hort l i ght waves
( ul travi ol et) better than gl ass. When not of radi o qual i ty,
crystal quartz i s mel ted to form bl anks to make speci al
l enses and pri sms. Opti cal quartz can be made onl y from
crystal s. Less cl ear quartz i s fused to make l aboratory
ware that i s hi ghl y resi stant to chemi cal acti on. Quartz
sand i s used in maki ng gl ass.
CRYSTALLI NE QUARTZ is the most common ki nd,
t hough wel l - devel oped cl ear crystal s are r ar e. Rock crys­
tal ( col orl ess crystal quartz) makes a fi ne gem. The col ors
in crystal quartz may in part be due to i mpuri ti es ( man­
ganese, i ron, ni ckel ) or t o radi um acti vi ty, as i n smoky
quartz; some di sappear when the quartz i s heated.
The crystal s often i ncl ude ai r bubbl es and traces of other
mi neral s. Hai r l i ke crystal s of r ut i l e for m ruti l ated quartz or
sageni te. Cot' s eye and ti ger' s eye may contai n fi bers of
asbestos. Ferrugi nous quartz i s col ored by hemati te.
ROSE QUARTZ occurs in crystal ­
l ine masses-rarel y as i ndividual
crysta I s. Some rose quartz i s as­
teriated-that is, the cut stone re­
fects or transmits l ight i n a star­
l i ke pattern. The col or i s probabl y
due to traces of manganese.
BLUE QUARTZ i s an uncommon
vari ety, di ferent from the vi ol et
amethyst. It is fou nd in the Bl ue
Ri dge Mountai ns, and wi th bl ue
fel dspar i n the Smoki es.
CITRIN£ i s a yel l ow quartz al so
cal l ed fal se topaz because of its
col or. Good crystal s of gem qual ­
i t y come from Br azi l . Not t o be
confused with pal e smoky quartz.
AMETHYST col or may be due to
traces of manganese. Deeper col ­
ored sPeci mens are cut as gems.
Once hi ghl y pri zed, amethyst l ost
much of its val ue after the great
Brazi l i an deposi ts were found.
SMOKY QUARTZ, al so cal l ed
cai rngorm or Scotch topaz, vari es
i n col or from smoky yel l ow to
brown and bl ack. The l atter form
i s cal l ed mari on. A wel l - known
Scotch gem stone, though al so
found and pri zed el sewhere.
MILKY 'QUARTZ, found in vei ns,
i s the most common crystal l i ne
quartz. I t is transl ucent to opaque
and i s not often used as a gem.
ti ger' s eye with ruti l e wi th i ron oxi de
South Dakota
Pennsyl vania
Brazi l
Brazi l
Scotl and
New Hamps hi re
CRYPTOCRYSTALLI NE QUARTZ merel y means quartz
with hi dden or mi croscopi c crystal s, in contrast to t he
vari eti es descri bed on the precedi ng page. Thi s group i n­
c l udes the chal cedon i es and the fi nts, cherts, and j aspers.
Most of these are transl ucent or opaque; some are col or­
f ul and ore pri zed as gems.
CHALCEDONY i s a group term
far a waxy, smooth form of quartz
often l i ni ng cavi ti es, fl l i ng cracks
or formi ng crusts. Someti mes
transparent, usual l y transl ucent.
Col ors from white to gray, bl ue,
brown, or bl ack.
CARNELI AN (sard) is D cl ear
chal cedony, usual l y some shade
of red or reddi sh brown.
JASPER i s an opaque quartz usu­
al l y red, yel l ow, or brown, or a
mi xture of these col ors. Someti mes
banded. May grade i nto chert.
FLINT i s a gray, brown, or bl ack
quartz frequent l y found as nod­
u l es i n chal k. Dul l er, more
opaque and rougher than chal ­
cedony, i t breaks wi th conchoi dal
fracture, produci ng sharp edges.
Wi del y used by earl y man for
maki ng tool s.
Dover, Engl and
CHRYSOPRASE i s a transl ucent,
appl e-green chal cedony; col ori ng
due to ni ckel oxi de.
AGATE is chal cedony with a
banded or i rregul ar, vari egated
appearance. Bands may be wavy
or paral l el , from diferences i n
deposi ti on. Petri fed wood i s usu­
al l y an agati zed wood. Agate
may be arti fci al l y col ored. See
p. 52 for moss agate.
ONYX i s agate wi th even, par­
al l el bands usual l y of bl ack and
white or brown and whi te.
SARDONYX i s a form of onyx
wi th al ternati ng bands of sard
(car nel i an) and whi te-that is, of
red and whi te bands.
CHERT, or hornstone, i s an i m­
pure form of fi nt-usual l y more
bri ttl e. Col or: wh ite, yel l ow, gray,
or brown.
C HERT-I l l i noi s
CHRYSOPRASE-Cal i for ni a
ONYX-Brazi l
CHALCEDONY-Tampa, Fl a. JASPER-Mi Chi gan
8 1
Wal bch, Bohemi a

• DI ATOMS (magnifed)
3 ×
OPAL is a noncrystal l i ne form of
quartz - a si l ica gem contai ni ng
varyi ng amounts of water (usual ly
3 to 9 per cent). Opal forms as a
l ow-temperature deposi t around
hot spri ngs and i n vei ns, as i n Ne­
vada. I t makes up the skel etons of
di atoms and si l iceous sponges. Opal
is usual l y col orl ess or white, wi th
col or onl y i n gem forms. H. 5. 5 to
6. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 1 . luster gl assy,
pearl y, or resinous. Streak white.
Among the varieties are:
Common Opal Mi l ky white,
green yel l ow to bri ck red; some­
what transl ucent, gl assy, or resin­
ous. Widespread, often i n vol cani c
rocks. Vari ous names for diferent
col ors and gem forms (p. 86).
Hyal i te is a cl ear, col orl ess,
gl assy opal encrusti ng rocks or fl l ­
i ng smal l vei ns. Someti mes transl u­
cent or white.
Geyserite or si l iceous si nter is
a form of opal found around gey­
sers and hot spri ngs. I t may be
frm, porous, or fbrous; usual l y
gray or white, and opaque. Often
forms odd structures.
Tripol ite is formed of micro­
scopic shel l s of diatoms (di atomite)
and other organisms. White,
chal ky, fne-grai ned, but hard. Wi l l
scratch gl ass.
GEMS are the most pri zed and famous of al l mi ner al s.
Al l are better, c l earer, or more crystal l i ne for ms of mi n
eral s whi ch in common occurrences are l ess beautif ul and
l ess spectacul ar. Di amonds, emeral ds, rubi es, and sap­
phi res stand out as the true gems. Other stones are cl assi ­
fed as semi preci ous and ornamental stones. Scarcity and
fashi on are i mportant i n deter mi ni ng the val ue of a gem,
but the fol l owi ng physi cal properti es are pri zed: l uster,
trans parency, col or, and hardness.
luster depends on how l i ght is refected by t he mi neral .
The transparent gems al so refract or bend l i ght and a re
cut to turn t he l i ght back i nto the observer' s eye. Col or i s
essent i al i n some gems, and i nci dental i n others. I t may
add or detract greatl y f r om the gem's val ue. The harder
the gem, the better it resi sts scratchi ng of i t s pol i shed sur ­
faces. Her e are some of the best- known gems and semi ­
preci ous stones. Many other mi neral s and some rocks are
occasi onal l y used as gems.
yel l ow
DI AMONDS are pure carbon (C);
H. 1 0; Sp. Gr. 3. 5. Found as iso·
metri c crystal s or crystal l i ne masses.
Col orl ess or with t i nts of yel l ow, pi nk,
bl ue, brown, and bl ack. When not of
gem qual i ty, di amonds have i mpor·
tant i ndustri al uses as abrasives.
South Africa
TRANSPARENT GEMS are stri ki ng for thei r l uster and
br i l l i ance and often f or hardness and col or too. Most ar e
oxi des of al umi num, beryl l i um, and magnesi um, some­
ti mes wi th s i l i ca. Al l quartz gems ( pp. 86-87) are si l ica.
AQUAMARINE i s a l i ght bl ue­
green form of beryl ( 3BeO· AI ,03•
6Si 02) , onl y ore of t he metal
beryl l i um. H. 7.5 to 8. I t al so oc­
curs as yel l owi sh gol den beryl .
Found i n many New Engl and l o­
cal ities.
CHRYSOBERYL di fers from
beryl i n being BeO•AI 203. Hard­
ness 8.5; Sp. Gr. 3. 6. Col or: green,
possi bl y due to chromi um. Al ex­
andrite, a dark green form, i s red
by transmi tted l i ght.
EMERALD i s a form of beryl
varyi ng i n col or from l i ght to
deep emeral d green. Ori ental
emeral d, a green corundum gem,
i s harder and may be the most
val uabl e gem.
r ar e f or ms of al umi na ( AI 203) .
The gems vary i n col or. Deep red
rubi es are val ued more than dia­
monds. Star sapphi res refect
l ight i n a si x-poi nted star, as do
a few other mi neral s. Green, pur­
pl e, and yel l ow corundum are
known as ori ental emeral d, ori en­
tal amethyst, and or iental topaz.
Tasmani a
cut sapphi re
TOPAZ, a mi neral of granites
and other i gneous rocks, i s an
al umi no-fuoro-si l i cate. large crys­
tal s have been found, some of
gem qual i ty. These are usual l y
yel l ow, brown, or pi nk ( when
heated) . H. 8; Sp. Gr. 3. 5. Fal se
topaz is browni sh quartz.
GARNETS are a common group
of si l icate mi neral s ( pp. 104- 1 05) ,
someti mes of gem qual ity. Pyrope
and al mandi te are best known.
Green demantoi d i s al so a gem.
SPODUMENE ( Li AI Si 206) occurs
i n pegmatite rocks, often form­
ing l ong crystal �. Two gem forms
exi st: Hi ddenite, a green gem
spodumene from North Car ol i na,
and kunzite, pi nk col ored, frst
found near San Di ego, Cal . Gem
spodumenes al so occur i n Brazi l .
ZIRCON ( ZrSi 04) i s common i n
i gneous rocks, but fai rl y rare as a
gem stone. Cl ear brown crystal s
turn bl ue when heated and hence
make better gems.
TOURMALINE, commonl y bl ack
( p. 95) , forms l ong crystal s, some­
ti mes vari col ored. Red, green,
brown, and bl ue t our mal i nes are
SPINEL ( MgAI 204) someti mes
reaches gem qual i ty, the best red
gems comi ng from Ceyl on. Brown,
green, and even bl ue spi nel s oc­
cur. H. 8; Sp. Gr. 3. 8.
New York
Ceyl on
Some transparent gems are i denti cal mi ner al s that di f­
fer onl y in col or, as the ruby and the sapphi re. Trans­
parency, l ack of faws, col or, and si ze deter mi ne the val ue
of these gems . For syntheti c gems , see pp. 92-93.
QUARTZ GEMS, the best known semi preci ous stones,
ar e the same as the mi neral s descri bed on pp. 76-82. Of
these gems, opal s are the most val uabl e, some bei ng cl as­
sifed as preci ous. The transparent quartz gems range
from col orl ess through yel l ow, brown, bl ue, bl ack, purpl e,
Austral i a
Brazi l
Austral i a
pi nk and, rarel y, green. The transl ucent or opaque quartz
gems have an even wi der array of col ors and forms.
Some are banded, stri ped, or mottl ed. Names of al l these
gems vary l ocal l y. Some bear sever al names; some names
are used for several stones.
:�-� �-�-��- �

• � • '

¤ w
ONYX-Brazi l
Ti bet Austral i a
earl y Chi nese
JADE i s the name gi ven a group
of opaque, waxy or pearl y mi n­
eral s, usual l y green but al so yel ­
l ow, whi te, or pi nk. There are two
ki nds of "true j ade. " One is j ade-
MOONSTONE i s al bi te ( p. 99)
wi th a bl ui sh sheen.
LAPIS-LAZULI i s a rock r i ch i n
! azurite. Us ual l y an ornamental
stone, i t i s al so used as a gem.
i te, a gem form of pyroxene. The
ot her i s neph ri te, a form of am­
phi bol e ( pp. 1 00- 1 01 ) . li ght,
transl ucent, emeral d green j ade­
ite is consi dered a preci ous stone.
AMAZONI TE i s a green form of
gem-qual ity mi crocl i ne (p. 99).
MALACHITE, often wi th azurite
(pp. 32-33), occurs i n masses. Cut
for gems or ornaments.
OPAQUE GEMS, with the excepti on of jade, grade of
i nto ornamental stones. The group i ncl udes representa­
tives of metal l ic ores and rock-formi ng mi neral s. Some,
l i ke obsi di an, l api s, and jet, are better cl assi fed as rocks.
One unusual mi neral that coul d ft i n t his gr oup i s the
RHODONI TE may be used as a
gem stone because of its col or and
hardness. See al so pp. 52-53.
HEMATITE, an i ron mi neral (pp.
40-42), i s cut as a bl ack, shi ny
gem when crystal l i ne.
OBSIDIAN or vol cani c gl ass ( p.
1 1 6) has l ong been used for ar­
rowheads and pr i mitive cutti ng
tool s. I t pol i shes wel l and makes
an attractive semi preci ous stone.
RHODOCHROSITE, softer t han
rhodonite, has the same attractive
pi nk col or. See al so pp. 52-53.
JET, a tough form of soft coal ,
takes a hi gh pol i sh. A semi preci ­
ous gem from Engl and and Spai n.
TURQUOISE, a copper-and-al u­
mi num phosphate mi neral , i s
pri zed by western I ndi ans. Good
qual ity turquoi se i s rare. Cheap
stones ar e often dyed bl ue.
pearl , formed by a number of fresh-water and mar i ne
mol l usks when sand or some ot her mater i al i rritates the
ani mal 's mant l e. layers of aragonite form t he pearl , whi ch
grows year by year. Pear l s are soft ( H. 4), but have a
unique l uster.
bri l l i ant
emeral d
GEM CUTTI NG i s on anci ent art whi ch has often been
successf ul l y pursued by amateurs. Wi th comparati vel y
l i ttl e equi pment a person con cut and pol i sh gems and
or namental stones and con l ear n t o mount them i n hand­
mode or purchased setti ngs. As a creati ve, sati sfyi ng hob­
by, gem cutti ng grows more popul ar each year. Enthusi asts
often form c l ubs for mutual ai d or do t hei r work as one
acti vity of a rock and mi neral cl ub. Ski l l i n cutt i ng and
pol i shi ng comes wi th practi ce. I f one cannot fnd gems or
semi preci ous stones, rough materi al or port l y worked
"bl anks" con be purchased from deal ers by the pi ece or
by the pound or carat, dependi ng on the stone.
Wi th apparatus powered by a smal l el ectri c motor, t he
amateur frst l earns t o cut stones and make cabochons,
Dop sti ck hol ds
gems for cutti ng
ond pol i shi ng
si mpl e gem cutti ng
and pol i shi ng outft
pi eces wi th round or curved s urfaces. Later he l earns to
cut stones wi th facets or faces, whi ch bri ngs out the br i l ­
l i ance of transparent gems. Five common types of faceted
cuts are shown at the top of p. 90.
As i n most other hobbi es i nvol vi ng ski l l , one l earns best
by worki ng and studyi ng wi th a person of experi ence.
After you have begun, t he books and magazi nes on gems
and gem cutti ng l i sted bel ow wi l l be of val ue.
POPU LAR GE MOLOGY, Ri chard M. Pearl . John Wi l ey & Sons, I nc. , New
York, 1 948. An i ntroducti on to gems by an outstandi ng col l ector.
THE ART OF GE M CUTT I NG, Dake and Pearl , Mi neral ogi st Publ i shi ng
Company, Portl and, Ore. , 1 954. A short, abundantl y i l l ustrated gui de.
THE LAPI DARY JouRNAL, Pal m Desert, Cal . , a bi monthl y j ournal of ama­
teur col l ecti ng and gem cutti ng.
RoCKS AND MI NERALS, Box 29, Peekski l l , N. Y, a bi mont hl y j ournal
deal i ng wi t h amat eur acti vities and hobbi es.
di amond wheel
cutti ng agate
di amond wheel
i nteri or
of boul e
SYNTHETI C GEMS-once a dream-duri ng the past few
decades have become a real i ty. Besi des the economi c
probl ems t here were ampl e sci ent i fc ones. Attempts to
make synthetic di amonds about the t urn of the century
met wi th dubi ous success. The probl em seems to have been
sol ved by renewed eforts i n 1 955. The goal here was to
produce i ndustrial di amonds, rather t han gems. In thi s
di recti on, a new syntheti c, borazon, produced i n 1 957
seems to be as hard as di amond and much better abl e to
wi thstand hi gh temperatures. I t i s with corundum, how­
ever, that the best syntheti c gems have been made. A
method of fusi ng fne al umi na (AI 203) in a very hot fame
was perfected i n 1 902. By addi ng the appropri ate mi neral
pi gments, syntheti c rubi es, sapphi res, emeral ds, and si mi ­
l ar gems of l arge si ze and fne qual ity have been formed.
" Emeral d"
"Bl ue Zi rcon"
"Spi nel "
"Tourmal i ne" "Sapphi re"
SYNTHETI C DI AMOND (actual si ze)
"Ai exandri te"
I n the apparatus shown on p. 92, the al umi na mixture
si fts down t hrough the oxyhydrogen fl ame and forms Ö
sl ow-growi ng boule at the end of the cerami c rod. Syn­
theti c j ewel s are uni versal l y used for watches, and i t i s
hard to tel l syntheti c corundum gems from natural ones.
Besi des the corundum gems, a number of other syn­
theti c gems have been produced. These ar e chemi cal l y
i dentical t o the natural gems. Other man- made gems are
wi thout nat ural counterparts and, fnal l y, t here are i mi ta­
ti ons made of gl ass. Gems may al so be dyed ( as agates)
or have thei r col or changed by heat, chemi cal acti on,
or radi oacti vi ty. A t hi n l ayer of preci ous stone i s some­
ti mes mounted on a l arger backi ng of i nexpensi ve ma­
teri al ( p. 1 5) . For t hese and ot her reasons i t i s wi se to get
expert hel p when sel ecti ng val uabl e stones.
The mi neral s on thi s tree are the ones that are of maj or
i mportance i n formi ng the rocks of the eart h' s crust. Some
rocks have no defnite mi neral s-j ust organ i c or gl assy
materi al . But most of them do contai n d i screte mi neral s­
those from the groups pi ctured above predomi nat i ng.
ROCK-FORMI NG MI NERALS are as mi scel l aneous a
group as the gems. They are i mportant as the bui l di ng
bl ocks of the sol i d earth, f r om whi ch mount ai ns are made
and val l eys carved. They furni sh t he mi neral s of our soi l
and t he sal t of t he seas. Most of these mi ner al s contai n
metal s, but they are not metal l i c ores. Some ar e val ued as
gems when, under r ar e ci rcumstances, t hey attai n gem
qual ity. A few are of commerci al val ue, but i t i s as basi c
consti tuents of rocks ( p. 1 09) t hat the true val ue of the
group i s real i zed.
Nearl y al l the rock-for mi ng mi neral s are si l i cates, that
i s, they consi st of a metal combi ned wi th si l i con and oxy­
gen. Some are compl ex si l i cates, i nvol vi ng several metal s
and several s i l i cate groups. Thi s compl exi ty makes chemi ­
cal testi ng of rock-for mi ng mi neral s a di fcul t matter. But
the common mi ner al s of i gneous and metamor phi c rocks
can be i denti fed by payi ng cl ose attenti on to thei r physi cal
properti es.
I n the rock-formi ng group are some mi ner al s treated
el sewhere. Quartz (pp. 76-82), especi al l y i n i ts crystal l i ne
forms, i s very common i n rocks. Cal cite and dol omi te ( pp.
63-65) can al so be cal l ed rock-for mi ng mi neral s; so can
hal ite and gyps um.
TOURMALI NE, a si l i cate of al umi­
num with boron and several other
metal s, i s occasional l y abundant wi th
mica and fel dspars i n grani ti c rocks.
I t is mostl y bl ack-other col ors form­
ing gems (p. 85) . Note the tri angul ar,
stri ated crystal s. H. 7; Sp. Gr. 3.
MI CAS are an unusual fami l y of mi neral s, famed because
of t he perfect basal cl eavage whi ch enabl es one to cl eave
of paper-thi n, fexi bl e sheets. Such sheets from l arge
"books" made the "i si ngl ass" heatproof wi ndows of ol d
stoves and ranges. Because of t hei r hi gh el ectri Cal resi st­
ance, t he i ron-free mi cas are wi del y used in many ki nds
of el ectri cal and el ectroni c equi pment. Thi s i mportant use
has l ed to the experi mental producti on of arti fci al mi cas.
Mi cas are si l i cate mi neral s. Al l i ncl ude oxi des of al u­
mi num and si l i con wi th other metal s, si ngl y or in combi na­
ti on. They al so contai n some water i n combi nati on wi th
t he other el ements. Part of thi s water (about 5 per cent)
is l ost when mi cas are heated. Mi cas are common i n
grani tes and s i mi l ar i gneous rocks. Large, si x-si ded crys­
tal s-some wei ghi ng as much as 1 00 l bs. -occur i n pegma­
ti tes. Muscovite, the most common mi ca, i s mi ned com­
merci al l y i n the Bl ack Hi l l s of South Dakota and i n a few
other pl aces i n this country. The best and most perfect
"books" are from l arge deposi ts i n I ndi a.
Mi cas al so f or m i n metamorphi c rocks as ot her mi neral s
are al tered by heat and pressure. The mi ca i n mi ca schi st
and in gnei ss is of t hi s ori gi n, as is the mi ca i n some ki nds
of crystal l i ne marbl e.
VERMICULITES are cl ay mi ner­
al s contai ni ng water, cl osel y re­
l ated fa the mi cas. When they
are heated, steam farms and
practi cal l y expl odes the faky
mi neral , expandi ng it to many
ti mes its ori gi nal vol ume. A soft
yel l ow or bronze materi al , i t is
used for i nsul at i on and for l i ght­
wei ght aggregates. I t i s excel ­
l ent for growi ng cutti ngs and
seedl i ngs.
BIOTITE is a dark-col ored mi ca,
brown or bl ack, someti mes green,
contai ni ng magnesi um and i ron.
I t i s abundant i n some granites
and i s al so common in schists and
gneiss. Smal l barrel -shaped crys­
tals are someti mes found. Biotite
may occur with muscovi te in
metamorphi c rocks. Thi n cl eavage
sheets often show l i ght spots, ri ngs,
or hal os. H. 2. 5-3; Sp. Gr. 2. 9.
MUSCOVITE i s a pal e, al most
col orl ess mi ca-H. 2. 2; Sp. Gr.
2.8. I t i s a potash mi ca of vari ­
abl e chemical composi ti on. Named
after Muscovy, where i t was used
as a substi tute for gl ass, thi s com­
mon mica occurs i n many pl aces.
Crystal s are common and may
i ncl ude fattened garnets, quartz,
or tourmal i ne. Abundant i n gran­
i tes and pegmati tes.
PHLOGOPI TE, rel ated to biotite
and found wi th it, i s a magnesi um­
potassi um mica often contai ni ng
i ron and fl uori ne. Hardness and
speci fc gravity much l i ke musco­
vi te. large cryst al s of phl ogopi te
are mi ned i n Ontari o and Mada­
gascar. I t i s the mi ca usual l y seen
as brown fl ecks i n crystal l i ne dol o­
mite and marbl e.
LEPIDOLI TE i s a l i thi um mi ca
wi th potassi um and fuori ne, al so
qui te vari abl e in composi ti on. I t
i s an ore of t h e l i ght metal l i t hi um.
Some deposits occur i n New Eng­
l and; more near San Di ego, CaL,
where one fnds both an attrac­
ti ve l avender and a pal e yel l ow
farm. lepi dol i te gi ves a cri mson
fame col or.
Bancroft, Ontari o, Canada
Keystone, S. Dak.
LABRADORITE ¯ an i ri ­
descent bl ue pl agi ocl ase
fel dspar used i n ornament
and decorati on.
FELDSPARS for m t he most abun­
dant gr oup of mi nera
s. I f t he
group wer e consi dered a si ngl e
mi neral ( and there i s good rea­
son for this) it woul d be t he most
common mi neral by far - fve
ti mes as common as quartz. Fel d­
spars are found i n nearl y al l i gne­
ous rocks and i n rocks formed
from them. Al l are al umi num si l i -
cates combi ned wi t h one or t wo more metal s. Fel dspars
have common physi cal properti es. Thei r crystal forms are
very s i mi l ar and the crystal angl es are al l cl ose to 60° and
1 20° . Fel dspars show two good cl eavage faces, at ri ght
angl es or nearl y so. Thei r hardness i s 6 or a bi t more, and
thei r speci fc gravi ty about 2. 6. They usual l y have a
smooth, gl assy, or pear l y l uster.
Fel dspars may be cl assi fed by crystal structure or by
chemi cal composi ti on. Nei ther i s of much hel p to the
amateur. From the chemi cal poi nt of vi ew, the potash
fel dspars ( orthocl ase and mi crocl i ne) are put i n one group.
The other group, contai ni ng t he pl agi ocl ase fel dspars,
begi ns wi th al bite (a sodi um fel dspar) and ends wi th
anorthite (a cal ci um fel dspar). Between these are fel d­
spars that are di fcul t to i denti fy because they contai n
varyi ng proporti ons of sodi um and cal ci um, as ol i gocl ase,
andesi ne, and l abradori te. Rarer fel dspars wi th bari um
and other metal s are al so known to occur.
Fel dspars are wi del y used i n
cerami c i ndustri es i n the manufac­
ture of gl azes, fux enamel s, and
bi nders. They ul ti matel y decay to
form kaol i n ( p. 49) or other cl ay
mi neral s ( p. 1 50).
ORTHOCLASE, a fai rl y common
fel dspar, i s usual l y whi te, yel l ow,
or pi nk. I t i s a potash fel dspar,
some vari eti es contai ni ng sodi um;
i n ot her s bari um may repl ace t he
potassi um. A variety known as
adul ari a, wi th a bl ui sh refected
sheen, i s someti mes cut as moon­
stone, a semi preci ous stone. An­
other vari ety, sani di ne, i s found
i n vol cani c rock.
MICROCLINE i s al so a potash
fel dspar-the most common one.
Bot h i t and orthocl ase l ack t he
fne l i nes or st ri at i ons seen on the
cl eavage faces of pl agi ocl ase
fel dspars. Mi crocl i ne i s al so foun d
i n a pal e green col or ( amazonite,
p. 88), sometimes of gem qual i ty.
The best crystal s a re from grani tes
near Pikes Peak.
ALBI TE i s one of the pl agi ocl ase
fel dspars. I t i s a sodi um fel dspar
wi th a sl i ghtl y l ower speci fc grav­
i ty than ot hers, and frequentl y
contai ns potassi um. The basal
cl eavage surface i s marked wi th
fne l i nes. Col or wh ite, gray, or
bl ui sh, often wi t h a bl ui sh sheen.
Some are cut as moonstones. AI ·
bi te i s common i n gr ani ti c rocks
and i n aci di c l avas.
ANORTHI TE i s a cal ci um fel dspar
whi ch ends the seri es begi nni ng
wi t h al bi te. Between t hem i s ol i ­
gocl ase, wi t h 1 5 to 25 per cent
cal ci um. Ol i gocl ase i s common i n
East Coast gr anites. Anorthite is
l ess common; i t occurs i n several
forms, mai nl y white, gray, or
gl assy. Smal l amounts of sodi um
a re usual l y present.
Al bi te twi nni ng
ACTI NOLI TE-green; fbrous or
radi ati ng, gl assy cryst al s.
HORNBLENDE H. 5 to 6; Sp. Gr.
3 to 3. 4. Crystal s common.
1 00
TREMOLI TE-whi te, gray, or
col orl ess; usual l y l ong, bl aded
crystal s.
AMPHI BOLES are compl ex hydrous s i l i cates contai ni ng
cal ci um, magnesi um, and i r on. Crystal s are often l ong or
needl e- l i ke; someti mes fbrous ( p. 75) . When short, they
are si x-si ded. The c l eavage pl anes are at about 55° and
1 25° , formi ng wedge- shaped c l eavage fragments. These
characteri sti cs are i mportant i n separati ng amphi bol es
from pyroxenes ( p. 1 01 ). Hornbl ende, dar k green to
bl ack and gl assy, is found in basi c i gneous rocks and i n
such al tered rocks as hornbl ende schi st. I t contai ns al u­
mi num and is most often of secondary ori gi n.
Act i nol ite and tremol ite may be consi dered one mi n­
eral or two. The crystal forms are t he same but i n acti no­
l ite some of the magnesi um i s repl aced by i ron, gi vi ng
the mi nera l a green col or. Bot h are secondary mi ner al s
r el ated to amphi bol e j ades and asbestos ( p. 75).
ENSTATITE H. 5. 5; Sp. Gr. 3. 5.
Col or vari abl e.
AUGITE H. 5 to 6; Sp. Gr. 3. 5.
Green to bl ack; gl assy.
DIOPSIDE H. 5 to 6;
Sp. Gr. 3. 4. Col or ,
whi te to green and
brown - someti mes
PYROXENES are compl ex s i l i cates, cl osel y rel ated to
the amphi bol es. Pyroxenes are often found as pr i mary
mi ner al s in i gneous rocks. Thei r cl eavage angl es are
cl ose to 90° , gi vi ng squar.d c l eavage fragments. They
too are often fbrous or needl e- l i ke. Most are gray or
green, gr adi ng i nt o bl ack. The ki nds of pyroxenes are not
di sti nct. They vary chemi cal l y as i ron repl aces cal ci um
and magnesi um. When t hi s occurs, enstati te becomes
hypersthene and di opsi de becomes hedenbergi te. En­
stati te i s someti mes found i n meteori tes from outer space.
Di opsi de, usual l y a l i ght green, i s most common i n meta­
morphosed dol omi ti c mar bl es. Augi te, t he most common
pyroxene, is a compl ex of al umi num, magnesi um, cal ci um,
and i ron si l i cates found i n near l y al l basi c i gneous rocb
and dark l avas, di kes, and si l l s.
1 0 1
1 02
ZEOLI TES are not maj or rock formers but they are wi de­
l y di stri buted. Al l are chemi cal l y rel ated to the fel dspars
-wi th the addi ti on of water, chemi cal l y combi ned. Thi s
water is hel d l oosel y, so al l zeol ites boi l and bubbl e when
heated by a bl owpi pe. Thei r name means "boi l i ng stone. "
About 25 mi neral s ft i nto the zeol ite group. I n addi ti on
t her e are several zeol ite associ ates-mi neral s chemical l y
s i mi l ar but not of t he zeol ite patter n. Zeol ites and thei r
associ ates are often found i n l avas, f l l i ng cavi ti es and
vei ns. Al l ar e pal e, fai rl y soft mi neral s of l ow densi ty. The
abi l i ty of zeol ites to i nterchange i ons of cal ci um and
sodi um has promoted the man ufacture of artifci al zeo­
l ites for use as water softeners.
Sti l bite often occurs i n pearl y, sheafl i ke masses of
twi nned crystal s. Radi ati ng crystal s, often trans l ucent,
may al so form rounded knobs. Col or: white, yel l ow, to
reddi sh- brown. H. 3. 5 to 4; Sp. Gr. 2. 1 .
Chabazi te occurs wi th sti l bi te, usual l y i n the form
of l arge rhombohedral -al most cubi c-crystal s. I t i s whi te,
occasi onal l y pi nk, wi th a gl assy l uster; transparent or
transl ucent. H. 4 to 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 1 .
Natrol i te forms sl ender, pri smati c needl e- l i ke crystal s.
I t fuses i n the heat of a candl e fame-a di sti ngui shi ng
c haracteri stic. Col or, white t o yel l owi sh. H. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 2;
l uster, gl assy.
Pectol ite i s seen i n taperi ng masses of t hi n needl es
someti mes several i nches l ong. H. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 8. Col or
usuall y white; l uster si l ky. I t is al so fbrous or may form
radi ati ng masses. Pectol i te needl es are dangerousl y sharp
and shoul d be handl ed wi t h care.
Prehnite and pectol i te are zeol ite associ ates whi ch
may occur together. Prehni te i s usual l y i n compact masses
of fat l i ght-green crystal s. luster, gl assy; britt l e and trans­
l ucent. H. 6 to 6. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 9.
New Jersey
PREHNI TE-New Jersey
Pennsyl vani a
1 03
GARNETS are better known as gems than as rock-form­
i ng mi neral s, but t hey are common and form a smal l but
conspi cuous i ngredi ent of i gneous and metamor phi c rocks.
Garnets are a cl ose- kni t fami l y of s i l i cate mi neral s wi th
many common characteri sti cs. They al l form crystal s i n
the i sometri c system, usual l y wi t h 1 2 or 24 si des, t hough
someti mes combi ned forms wi t h 36 or 48 faces are found.
Chemi cal l y, garnets contai n the el ements cal ci um,
magnesi um, i r on, and al umi num, combi ned wi t h si l i con
and oxygen. Other, l ess common metal s may al so occur.
i n phyl l i te-Pennsyl van i a
cut gem crystal
crystal s in mi ca schi st, New York
GROSSULARITE i s a cal ci um­
al umi num garnet, normal l y c6l or­
l ess to wh i te, but col ored when
i t contai ns i ron as an i mpur i ty.
I t i s found mai nl y i n mar bl e. A
warm- brown var i ety from Ceyl on
i s cut as a gem. The name refers
to a Si beri an "gooseberry green"
var i ety.
PYROPE i s someti mes cal l ed
preci ous garnet, t hough i t i s
mi ned i n l arge q uanti ti es for
gar net paper. Cl ear, perfect
speci mens are found in South
Afri can "bl ue earth" wi th di a­
monds; they make fne gems.
Pyrope i s a magnesi um- al u­
mi num garnet.
ALMANDITE i s the "common
garnet" found i n many metamor­
phi c rocks. I t i s an i r on-al umi num
garnet, t hough part of the i ron
may be repl aced by magnesi um­
maki ng such forms si mi l ar to
pyrope. When i t has a cl ear red
col or i t i s someti mes-l i ke pyrope
-cal l ed preci ous gar net and i s
cut as a gem.
Crystals are abundant-from pinhead size up to 4 in. in
diameter. Fresh crystals have a glassy luster. There is
no distinct cleavage. All garnets have a hardness of about
7. Their density is more variable, between 3. 4 and 4. 3-
depending on the metals i n them. Most garnets are found
in schists, gneiss, and marbles. Some occur in lavas and
in granites.
Only a small percentage of garnets are of gem qual­
ity. In a few large deposits, garnets are mined and
crushed for garnet paper and other abrasives.
SPESSARTITE i s quite a rare
member of the group of al umi num
garnets. I t cont ai ns manganese
and al umi num. The manganese
often gi ves t he gar net a vi ol et t i nt
whi ch makes gem- qual i ty speci ­
mens parti cul ar l y val uabl e. Such
gem·qual ity st ones have come
from Vi r gi ni a gr an i tes.
ANDRADITE i s a garnet contai n­
i ng cal ci um and i r on. I t, t oo, i s
very common and l i ke al mandi te
i s cal l ed common gar net. Col or
var i es f r om yel l ow to green, red,
and bl ock, dependi ng on i mpu ri ­
ti es. I t occurs i n i gneous rocks
and i n some metamor phosed
l i mestones. The green form, de­
montoi d, i s a gem (p. 85) .
UVAROVITE i s a l es s common
garnet found i n serpenti ne rock
and i n l i mestones associ ated wi th
chromi um ores. I t i s a cal ci um·
ch romi um gar net. The ch romi um
gi ves i t i t s ri ch green col or. I t i s
u n l i ke mos t gar nets i n t hat a
spl i nter of it wi l l not fuse when
heated wi th a bl owpi pe.
crystal Í n
s chi st
1 05
1 06
crystal 0. 1 i n.
J ackson Cou nty, N. C.
OLI VI NE, al so cal l ed chrysol ite
or peri dot, i s the most common
member of a group of s i l icates.
Ol i vi ne is a magnesi um- i ron si l i ­
cate, col ored vari ous shades of
green (rarel y, brown) ; H. 6. 5 to 7;
Sp. Gr. 3. 3. Luster, gl assy; trans
parent to trans l ucent. Cl ear vari ­
eti es are cut as the gem peri dot.
Ol i vi ne i s found i n i gneous rocks
that are ri ch i n magnesi um and
l ow i n quartz, as basal t and gabbro; al so i n metamor­
phosed dol omi tes. I t is often found i n the form of smal l
gr ai ns or i n l arge, granul ar masses. The crystal s are
rel ati vel y rare, though occasi onal l y some have been
found up to several i nches l ong.
CHLORI TE is one, two, three, or more mi ner al s depend­
i ng on how careful l y the consti tuents are separated. I f
consi dered a s i ngl e mi ner al , chl ori te i s a mi xture of mag­
nesi um and i ron- al umi num s i l i cates, wi t h water. I t often
forms as an al terati on of rocks ri ch i n pyroxenes, am­
phi bol es, and bi oti te. I t may a l so for m i n cavi ti es of
basi c i gneous rocks. Chl orite is
usual l y green but may vary from
white to brown and bl ack. H. 2
to 2. 5; Sp. Gr. 2. 8; pear l y l uster;
streak, greeni sh or whi te. I t forms
i n masses, crusts, fbers, or bl aded
crystal s. The crystal s have a per­
fect basal cl eavage and, l i ke
mi ca, s pl i t i nto t hi n s heets. These
may bend s l i ght l y, l i ke sel eni te,
but are not el asti c l i ke mi ca.
Pennsyl vani a
carved serpent i ne
baok end
SERPENTI NE ( chemi cal l y s i mi l ar to c h l ori te) i s a mag­
nesi um si l i cate wi t h water, but may i ncl ude smal l amounts
of i ron or n ickel . The fbrous form of serpent i ne, chryso­
ti l e asbestos, i s descri bed on p. 75. A number of ot her
vari et i es depend on physi cal characteri sti cs, especi al l y
col or and l uster. Common or massi ve serpent i ne
( H4Mg3Si 209) vari es from cream white t hrough al l shades
of green to bl ack. Streak i s whi te. H. 2. 5 to 4; Sp. Gr. 2. 6;
transl ucent to opaque. Note t he greasy or waxy l uster
and feel of serpenti ne. Some weath

red speci mens are
earthy. There are mi caceous, fbrous, and mott l ed vari eti es,
some of them fuorescent.
The mi neral serpenti ne i s a secondary mi neral whi ch
al so occurs as metamor phosed serpent i ne r ock. Deposi ts
are l arge but at present have onl y mi nor use i n fi rebri cks.
Serpent i ne mar bl e (verd anti que) and deepl y col ored com­
mon serpent i ne are used for carvi ngs.
1 07
1 08
twi nned
crystal s
New Mexi co
STAUROLI TE i s an i ron-al umi num
s i l i cate often found wi th gar nets i n
such metamor phi c rocks as schists,
phyl l ites, and gnei sses. Brown to
bl ack in col or; streak, gray; H. 7 to
7.5; Sp. Gr. 3.7. Staurol ite al most
al ways occurs in crystal s-as ortho­
rhombi c pri sms and commonl y as
twi nned crystal s. Twi nni ng may be
at 60° or 90° . When at 90° , the
twi n crystal s form a perfect cross.
Such crystal s (fai ry crosses), broken
or weathered from the bedrock, are sol d as charms or
souveni rs. These may be up to 2 i n. l ong, but are usual l y
an i nch or l ess. Excel l ent speci mens occur in schi sts near
Mi neral Bl uf, Georgi a. Transparent crystal s occur rarel y,
and may be cut as gems.
EPI DOTE i s one of a group of compl ex s i l i cates of cal ­
ci um and al umi num wi t h water. I t f or ms i n near l y every
type of metamorphi c rock, in cracks and seams, as crys­
tal s or as t hi n green crusts. I t i s a typi cal mi neral where
i gneous rocks have come in contact wi th l i mestones. Crys­
tal s are usual l y sl ender pri sms, gradi ng i nto needl e- l i ke
forms. Col or, green to brown and bl ack; H. 6 to 7; Sp.
Gr. 3. 3. Easi l y i denti fed by hardness and col or.
cryst al
Al aska
• 6
/• �
  � · . i ¬ �
· {  .! �
p-- "' " .

�, `  � ,

, 4 � ¯ -� , :
• ? "

.  t . . , , !   �

� . `
- <
massi ve
Cal iforni a
at hi gh temperatures or from
mol ten materi al s. Pp. 1 1 0- 1 20.
formed by acti on of wo.ter, wi nd,
or or gani c agent s . Pp. 1 2 1 - 1 32.
R OC K â
Rocks are l arge masses of materi al t hat make u p the earth' s
crust. Some do not have di screte mi neral s but are composed
of gl asses or of organi c materi al s l i ke coal . Many rocks
are not sol i d-as soi l , gravel , sand, and cl ay. A rock may
consi st of a s i ngl e mi neral , as quartz, gypsum, or dol omite.
Most rocks contai n several mi neral s, or were formed from
ol der rocks i n whi ch these mi ner al s were present.
1 09
1 00 %

potas h potas h soda- l i me sodO - l | me
o o

0 u

fel dspar
' '
mi cas mi cas bi oti te mi ca O| OI | t O mi cO
pyroxene pyroxene pyroxene py r o×O¬ e
amphi bol e amphi bol e amphi bol e Omph i Ool e
/ /
soda- l i me
fel dspar
ol i vi ne
amphi bol e
Igneous rocks are classified by their texture, mineral
content, and origin. They all come from magmas-molten
mixtures of minerals, often rich in gases, found deep
below the surface. If magmas cool beneath the surface
they form i ntrusi ve rocks and develop typical structures
that may later be exposed by erosion. Magmas reaching
the surface form extrusi ve rocks, such as the spectacular
volcanic rocks.
Igneous rocks usually contain ferro-magnesian minerals
(amphiboles, pyroxenes, micas, or olivine) and feldspar
or feldspar-like minerals. Many contain quartz. Those rich
in light minerals (quartz and potash feldspar ) are called
acidic. These are light not only in color but in weight
(average Sp. Gr. 2. 6 to 2. 7) . Those richer in ferro-mag­
nesian minerals are called basic. They ore darker and
heavier (Sp. Gr. 3. 0 and more) . In texture, igneous rocks
range from those with large crystal s to glassy rocks with
no crystals at all.
1 1 0
I NTRUSI VE ROCKS form as magmas cool. This is a
gradual process in which the more volatile chemicals re­
main as · liquids and gases longer. Some intrusive rocks,
very near the surface, grade into extrusive types. Those
that cool deeper are more coarsely crystalline.
Grani te is the best known of the deeper igneous
(plutonic) rocks. It is usually light-colored, formed mainly
of potash feldspar (about 60 per cent) and quartz (about
30 per cent} , usually with mica or hornblende. The inter­
grown mineral crystals are all about the same size-a
characteristic of slow cooling. Fine granite has a salt-and­
pepper pattern. Feldspar may redden it. Granite is hard
and tough, widely used in construction and monuments.
Some granites may be metamorphic rocks (p. 1 40) .
Mi n nesota
1 1 1
1 1 2
OTHER I NTRUSI VE ROCKS i ncl ude some which have
cool ed near the surface. These may contai n a groundmass
of crystal l i ne grai ns surroundi ng l arger crystal s. Such
i gneous rocks made of crystal s ( phenocrysts) i n a fner
groundmass are known as porphyri es. Porphyri es are
Shel by, N. C.
Wausau, Wi s.
St. Cl oud, Mi nn.
PEGMATITE i s a coarse-grai ned vei n or
di ke rock wi t h crystal s that range from an
i nch or so t o many feet i n l ength. Pegma­
ti tes are mi ned for thei r mi ca and fel dspar,
or for gems and other accessory mi neral s.
They often contai n cavi ti es or vugs l i ned
wi th crystal s. I n one form, graphi c grani te,
the quartz farms angul ar fgures whi ch l ook
l i ke writi ng.
Some aecessory pegmatite mi neral s:
garnet arsenopyri te spodumene
apati te tourmal i ne emeral d
topaz l epi dol i te cryol i te
bery l chrysoberyl sapphi r e
ruby mol ybdeni t e rube l l ite
pyri te aquamari ne wol frami te
fuori te cassi teri te urani ni te
SYENITE is l ess common t han granite. I t
l acks quartz enti rel y or may have a smal l
amount, i n whi ch case i t i s known as
quartz-syeni te. Syeni te i s mai nl y potash
fel dspars wi th some mi ca or hornbl ende.
The crystals are usual l y smal l and the rock
i s even-textured. Syeni te al so forms por­
phyri es wi th phenocrysts of fel dspar.
GRANITE PORPHYRY, whi ch forms under
somewhat di ferent condi ti ons fr om granite,
has a granite groundmass i n which pheno­
crysts of fel dspar, quartz, or bi oti te mi ca
are embedded. A porphyry i s named after
the matrix or groundmass-such as syeni te
porphyry, basal t porphyry. They al so occur
i n extrusive rocks ( p. 1 1 6) .
found in i ntrusi ve rocks formed near the surface, and in ex­
trusive rocks, but do not occur in deep-seated i ntrus
i ves.
Pegmatite, granite, and syeni te are l i ght-col ored i ntru­
si ves. Di ori te, gabbro, and peri dotite are dark, wi th more
ferro- magnesi an mi neral s.
DIORI TE is a basi c rock ri ch in mi neral s
such as amphi bol es, bi oti te, or pyroxenes.
I I texture i s l i ke that of granite, but i t i s
composed mai nl y of pl agi ocl ase fel dspar
and ferro-magnesi an mi neral s. Other fel d­
spars may be present, and someti mes a
bi t of quartz. I ts col or i s usual l y gray or
dul l green. Grani tes grade i nto di ori tes
through i ntermedi ate forms-the grano­
di ori tes.
GABBRO, l i ke di ori te, has a gr ani ti c tex­
tu re. Si nce texture depends upon rate of
cool i ng, rocks of gabbro composi ti on vary
from fi ne-grai ned ( di abase) on the out­
si de of a di ke or si l l ( p. 1 1 4) to o typi cal
gabbro wi thi n. Gabbro is mode mai nl y of
pl agi ocl ase fel dspar and pyroxene, with
some ol i vi ne, traces of i l meni te, but no
quartz. A dark rock, its mi neral crystal s or e
deepl y i ntermeshed, maki ng i t O very t ough
r ock. Porphyri ti c gabbros are rare.
Dol eri te ( or di abase) is the fne-grai ned
gabbro whi ch often occurs i n si l l s or di kes.
I t grades i nto basal t at the edges, where
it has cool ed more raoi dl y
PERIDOTITE i s a dark, heavy i ntrusive rock
composed mai nl y of ol i vi ne wi th pyroxene
and ti ny fecks of phl ogopi te mi ca or horn­
bl ende. Li ttl e or no fel dspar i s present.
Fresh rock i s nearl y bl ack, but the more
common weathered speci mens are greeni sh
and softer. Peri doti te al ters i nto serpenti ne.
The South Afri can di amond deposi ts occur
i n peri doti te, whi ch, i n other pl aces, con­
tai ns i mportant deposi ts of ni ckel , chromi ­
um, and pl ati num.
Sol em, Moss.
Sal em, Mass.
Harz Mts. , Germany
1 1 3
I NTRUSI VE ROCK STRUCTURES are the natural forms
taken by i ntrusive rocks. Someti mes these structures form
deep beneath the surface. Wi th the passi ng of ti me, they
may l ater be exposed as coveri ng rocks are removed by
water, i ce, or wi nd. When i ntrusi ve structures appear at
the surface t hey may become spectacul ar features of the
l andscape. As they weather they produce typi cal ki nds of
soi l . Ri ch ore deposits formed wi th thei r i ntrusi on may then
become avai l abl e.
Pal i sades of t he Hudson
(scal e di storted)
DI KES are sheetl i ke i ntrusi ons ri si ng from
a bathol i th (p. 1 1 5) or from some other
source of magma. These sheets may vary
in thi ckness from a few i nches to hundreds
of feet, and may extend from a few feet
to many mi l es. The magma formi ng the
di ke fol l ows cracks an d j oi nts below the
surface, hence di kes characteristical l y cut
across the rock structures. Magma cool s
rapidl y i n contact wi th the sur rou ndi ng rock.
Hence the di ke may difer i n texture and
composi ti on i n t hese contact zones. The heat
of the i njected materi al may metamorphose
the adj oi ni ng rock (p. 1 39) . Mi l es of wel l ­
devel oped di kes are exposed near Spani sh
Peaks, Col orado. ·
SI LLS are si mi l ar in ori gi n to di kes. Whi l e
di kes cut across the exi sti ng rocks, si l l s
form paral l el to them, frequentl y shoul ­
deri ng thei r way i n between l ayers of sedi ­
mentary rocks. I f t hese l ayers are ti l ted,
the si l l wi l l be ti l ted al so. The Pal i sades
al ong the Hudson Ri ver near New York i s
a ti l ted si l l of di abase and gabbro. Si l l s
and di kes may occur near vol canoes when
l ava fl l s up cracks i n previ ous l ava fows.
Joi nts for mi ng regul ar 5- or 6-si ded col ­
umns mark some fne-grai ned i ntrusi ve
rocks, as i n the Gi ant' s Causeway i n I re­
l and and Devi l ' s Tower in Wyomi ng.
I ntrusi ve structures ori gi nate from deep reservoi rs of
magma whose or i gi ns are sti l l not cl ear. Magmas are
capabl e of produci ng both aci dic and basi c rocks. Aci di c
rocks tend to form maj or structures-bathol i ths, the cores
of mountai n ranges, and the great conti nental s hi el ds.
Basi c rocks occur more frequentl y i n di kes and s i l l s, often
gradi ng i nto extrusi ve rocks. Al l extrusi ve rocks, at one
pl ace or another, grade or j oi n i nto i ntrusi ves. Recogni zi ng
such structures enabl es one to i nterpret t he l andscape.
LACCOLI THS mi ght be l i kened t o bl isters
wi thi n the eart h' s thin skin of sedi mentary
rocks. Magma spreads outward between
rock l ayers and raises those above i t i nto
a dome that may be a thousand feet or
more hi gh and fr om one to ten mi l es
across. Sedi mentary layers l i fted by the
magma may crack, subj ecti ng them to a
more rapi d erosi on whi ch may eventual l y
expose the i gneous core. The edges of
resi stant upt urned sedi mentary l ayers
ar ound t he l accol i th may form ci rcul ar
ri dges cal l ed hogbacks. laccol i ths are
common i n the West, parti cul arl y i n Utah.
BATHOLITHS, the l argest i ntrusi ons, may
cover 1 00,000 square mi l es. Our l argest, i n
central I daho, spreads over 1 6,000 square
mi l es. I n the Rockies and Si erra Nevada
bathol i ths are exposed i n the mountai n
cores. Though some are anci ent, some are
new, i ndi cati ng t hat they are part of the
conti nual bui l di ng up of the earth' s crust.
As magma wel l s up i t may di ssol ve some
of the surroundi ng rock. I t may spread
u neven l y, trappi ng i sl ands of ol der rock.
Bathol i t hs general l y contai n coarse-grai ned
rocks. They are deepl y buri ed and may not
be uncovered for mi l l i ons of years. Smal l
bathol i ths are cal l ed stocks.
EXTRUSI VE ROCKS embrace a l arge group, the most
common member of whi ch i s l ava. Thi s mol ten materi al
pours out t hrough fssures and vol canoes. I t spreads i n
great l ava fows or bui l ds up cones. Vol can i c expl osi ons
throw fragments i nto the ai r as vol cani c ash or vol cani c
bombs. The forms and structures of these rocks are shown
RHYOLI TE-Col orado
RHYOLITE i s a l i ght-col ored aci di c rock
whi ch has very much the same chemi cal
composi ti on as grani te. I ts texture i s very
fne. When mi neral s can be seen in it­
phenocrysts of quartz and a gl assy fel d­
spar (sani di ne) -the rock i s a rhyol ite par·
phyry. Col or white to pi nk to gray, though
often reddi sh from i ron stai ns.
OBSI DI AN-Wyomi ng
OBSIDIAN and PUMICE a re chemi cal l y
the same as rhyol i te. Obsi di an or natu ral
gl ass i s formed when rhyol i ti c l ava i s
qui ckl y chi l l ed. Though i t i s dark-col ored,
t hi n fragments are l i ght and transparent.
I ndi ans made knives, arrowheads, and or­
naments from thi s unusual rock. Pitchstone
is a dul l er, rougher form of obsi di an. Rhyo­
l i te l ava bl own to a spongel i ke consistency
by the rel ease of gases forms pumi ce-a
vol cani c frot h. Pumi ce i s so l i ght i t foats on
water, and fragments may be washed
ashore far from t he vol cano.
PUMI CE-Mi l l ard Co. , Utah
1 1 6
ANDESITE is named for the Andes Moun·
tai ns, where it i s ubundant . I t contai ns
l i ttl e or no quartz, and has a greater pro­
porti on of ferro-magnesi an mi neral s, whi ch
gi ve the rock a dar ker col or than rhyol i te.
Porphyri es are common, wi th phenocrysts of
fel dspar or dark mi neral s. Andesi te i s i nter·
medi ate i n composi ti on between rhyol i te
and basal t. Si nce rhyol i te and andesite are
difcul t to di sti ngui sh i n the fel d, the term
fel site i s used for both when more accurate
i denti fcation is i mpossi bl e.
on pp. 1 1 8- 1 1 9. I n col or the rocks themsel ves may be
l i ght ( acidi c) or dark (basi c). Li ke i ntrusive rocks, the
extrusi ves grade from those ri ch i n quartz to those wi th no
quartz at al l . Most of the rocks are fne- grai ned because
of rapi d cool i ng, and are di fcul t for the amateur to
i denti fy and cl ass ify.
BASALT i s the common dark, heavy l ava
that i s wi despread the worl d over. I t i s
mai nl y pyroxene and a pl agiocl ase fel d­
spar, but the texture i s so fne that these
i ndi vi dual mi neral s ere rarel y seen. Ol i vi ne
may al so be present. I n total , the rock i s
about hal f fel dspar, hal f ferro·.magnesi an
mi neral s. Basal t vari es from a dar k gray
wi th a greeni sh ti nge to al most bl ack. I n
ar i d regi ons exposed basal t su rfaces fre­
quentl y devel op a whi te, l i my encrusta­
ti on. In humi d areas the iron i n basal t
oxi di zes, col ori ng t he su rface a rusty brown.
Somerset County, N. J.
I n addi ti on to t he dense r ock found i n
l ava fl ows, di kes, an d si l l s, bas al t has sev­
er al other forms. Upper surfaces of basal ti c
fows may contai n gas bubbl es which form
a porous and ci ndery rock cal l ed scori a.
later the hol es or vesi cl es may become fi l ed
wi th mi ner al s such as cal ci te, agate, and
amethyst, as wel l as zeol i tes. When t he
openi ngs are al mond- shaped the name
amygdal oi dal bas al t i s us ed. large deposi ts
of nati ve copper have been found i n such
basal ts, especi al l y i n Mi ch i gan.
ari d
weatheri ng
1 1 7
VOLCANOES AND LAVA FLOWS are the str.uctures
most typi cal of extrusi ve rocks. The Col umbi a l ava pl ateau,
consisti ng of a l arge number of l ava fats, covers over
200,000 square mi l es; in pl aces it i s up to a mi l e thi ck.
Vol cani c cones vary from steep ci nder cones ( 1 ) rarel y
1 000 ft . hi gh t o smal l er spatter cones (2) and l ow, broad
shi el d l ava cones (3) wi th sl opes of onl y a few degrees.
Most vol canoes are compound (4), wi th ci nders, ash, and
broken fragments ( brecci as) i nterbedded wi th l ava (see
bel ow). Some have radi ati ng di kes of basal t (5); others are
associ ated with extensi ve l ava fows (6).
Pahoehoe is the Hawai i an
name for a fui d l ava whi ch fows
freel y and cool s wi th a smooth,
ropy surface. Such l ava fows l ook
l i ke frozen ri vers of black, ti nted
wi th i ri descent pur pl e.
Viscous Lavas for m crusts
whi ch break and rol l over. Thi s
j umbl e, mi xed wi th scori a, forms
sharp, j agged fows. Such l ava i s
cal l ed aa, another Hawai i an name.
Vol can i c l avas have been studi ed
i ntensi vel y at Mauna Loa and Ki l ­
auea, bot h s hi el d cones.
Vol cani c Bombs are masses of
l i qui d l ava thrown i nto t he ai r.
Thei r moti on gi ves them the el on­
gat e shape and s mooth surface.
Active vol canoes throw vast quan­
ti ti es of gases and steam i nto t he
ai r as wel l as d ust, ashes, and frag­
ments rangi ng from l api l l i ( l ess t han
1 i n. ) to bl ocks wei ghi ng t ons.
Lava Caves and Tunnel s form
when a strong crust hardens under
whi ch the l iqui d l ava keeps fow­
i ng, l eavi ng a hol l ow. Crude caves
form i n overt urned masses of aa
l ava. I n some, dri ppi ng l ava forms
stal acti tes. I ce and snow whi ch fi l l
some l ava caves i n wi nter are so
protected that they do not mel t by
summer - maki ng "i ce caves, " a
touri st attracti on.
Craters of t he Moon, I daho
· New Mexi co
1 20
I GNEOUS ROCKS have l ong been known to be associ ­
ated wi th metal ores. Hot l i qui ds and gases from magmas
cool t o produce ores di rectly, or for m or es as t hey react
wi th the l ocal rocks they penetrate. Contact deposits are
formed around the edges of bathol i ths or other l arge i n­
trusi ons, especi a l l y when t hese have penetrated i nto l i me­
stones. Vei ns may extend from i gneous masses i nto t he
l ocal rock, carryi ng mi neral i zi ng l i qui ds and gases. A sys­
tem of vei ns whi ch can be mi ned as a uni t forms a lode,
l i ke the famous Mot her Lode of Cal i for ni a gol d days.
Other vei ns form as mi neral i zi ng sol uti ons penetrate
cracks and deposi t ores i n natural openi ngs or zones of
crushed rock.
Most pri mary ores are sul fdes. These and other ores
often occur i n speci fc mi neral associ ati ons. One exampl e
i s t he l ead- zi nc deposits of Kansas and Okl ahoma (sphal ­
eri te, gal ena, and many accessory mi neral s), another i s
t he zi nc, i ron, and manganese deposi ts at Frankl i n, N. J. ;
a t hi rd i s the i ron-ti tani um ores of the Adi rondack s.
SEDI MENTARY ROCKS are extremel y vari ed, di feri ng
wi del y i n texture, col or, and composi ti on. Nearl y al l are
made of materi al s that have been moved from a pl ace of
ori gi n to a new pl ace of deposi ti on. The di stance moved
may be a few feet or thousands of mi l es. Runni ng water,
wi nd, waves, currents, i ce, and gravity move mater i al s on
t he s urface of the earth by acti on that takes pl ace onl y
on or very near the surface. I n total these r ocks cover
about t hree- quarters of the eart h' s surface.
Unconsol i dated mud or sand i s usual l y referred to as
a sedi ment, whi l e consol i dated materi al s are cal l ed sed­
i mentary rocks. Rocks made up of grai ns or parti cl es are
cal l ed cl asti c; they may range from l ess t han a thousandth
of an i nch to huge boul ders. Other sedi mentary rocks are
of chemical or organi c or i gi n. Most sedi ment ary rocks
form i n l ayers or strata; many contai n fossi l s. Maj or sedi ·
mentary strata form sl owl y over mi l l i ons of years.
1 2 1
1 22
Great White Throne (sandstone) at Zl an Nati onal Park, Utah.
SANDSTONE i s formed by the acti on of wi nd, water,
and i ce on ol der rock. I t is mai nl y grai ns of quartz cement­
ed by s i l i ca, l i me, or iron oxi de. Si l i ca cement may produce
hard, dur abl e sandstones; the other cements are not as
resi stant. Sandstones grade of on the coarse si de i nto
congl omerates ( p. 1 28) and on the fi ner si de i nto sandy
shal es ( pp. 1 24- 1 25) . Most sandstones formed i n shal l ow
seas and show si gns of near-shore ori gi n-they often i n­
cl ude foss i l r i ppl emarks and shel l s of shal l ow-water ani ­
mal s. I n some sandstones, nodul es of soft l i monite or
hemat i te for m "pai ntpots" once used by I ndi ans.
New York
cemented by i ron
oxi de-Utah
ARKOSE-showi ng
fel dspor grai ns
Mt. Tom, Mass.
" I ndi an pai nt pot"
Gl en Cove, N. Y.
Cross-bedded sandstone formed from anci ent dunes-Kanab, Utah.
1 24
Li vi ngston Count, N. Y. Kent. N. Y.
SHALES or mudstones are mai nl y cl ays which have hard­
ened i nto rock. Shal es may grade i nto fne sandstones
or, when much l i me i s present, i nto s hal y l i mestones. Si nce
cl ay parti cl es are exceedi ngl y fne, they tend to be car­
ried i nto deep or qui et water. Shal es are often t hi n-bed­
ded or l ami nated, wi th fai rl y uniform texture. Thei r col or
i s usual l y gray, but vari es from bl ack to du l l red.
Cl ays and shal es are frequentl y so fne-grai ned that
they serve as a barri er to movements of water. Cl ays and
si l ts t hat f or m i n l akes may s how dar k and l i ght al ternati ng
l ayers cal l ed YOlYU5¿ each pai r of l ayers represent i ng a
year' s deposi t. By counti ng the varves t he age of gl aci al
l akes and other deposits can be esti mated. For i nstance,
varve counts i ndi cate that the shal es of the Green Ri ver
formati on i n Wyomi ng took over 5 mi l l i on years to form.
Other structures found i n shal es are shown on t he next
page. Shal es are used in the manufacture of cement. Un­
consol i dated cl ays ( p. 1 5 1 ) are of tremendous val ue for
cerami c and other uses. Si nce cl ays and shal es are com­
monl y f<rmed from rocks ri ch in fel dspar, they contai n
much a l umi num si l icate. Some shal es are oi l reservoi rs.
Bi l l i ons of tons of oi l shal e are a potenti al source of petro­
l eum for future use-when present hi gh-yi el d sources wi l l
have been depl eted.
(cross secti on)
CONCRETIONS are often found
i n shal es, sandstones, and l i me­
stones. They may be spheri cal or
fattened masses formed ar ound a
fossi l or some other n ucl eus. They
RAINDROPS fal l i ng on mud or
cl ay of j ust the ri ght consi stency
wi l l l eave s mal l pi ts. Conti n ued
rai n woul d wash these away, but
a bri ef shower fol l owed by a
peri od of dryness may preserve
rai ndrop i mpressi ons. These are
rarer and harder to fnd than
mud cracks.
CONCRETI ON-Sandusky, Ohi o
may be very smal l or up t o sev­
eral feet i n di ameter. Concreti ons
are often har der than t he en­
cl osi ng r ock an d hence are
found as they weat her out of i t.
MUD CRACKS form as deposi ts
of mud and cl ay in shal l ow l akes
or on mudfats dry i n the s un. The
shri nkage forms rough si x-si ded
bl ocks. later fresh mud may be
washed i nto the s hr i nkage cracks.
Mud cracks i ndi cate the shal l ow­
water ori gi n of the rock.
rai ndrop i mpr i nts i n ,shal e
I l l i noi s
1 25
} 26
LI MESTONES are exceedi ngl y vari abl e in col or, texture,
and ori gi n. They consi st mai nl y of t he mi neral cal cite ( p.
63) and react l i ke cal cite chemi cal l y. Most of them are of
mari ne or i gi n-some for mi ng at great depths. Both pl ant
and ani mal l ife, di rectl y and i ndi rectl y, contri bute t o t hei r
formati on. Many ki nds of ani mal s contri bute the mi neral s
that form l i mestone-coral s, worms, cri noi ds, mol l usks, and
certai n protozoa. Al gae are al so i mportant l i me- preci p­
i tati ng pl ants. Some l i mestones are chemi cal preci pi tates,
whi l e others are cemented fragments of l i me.
A uni que and compl ex natural bal ance i s known to i n­
vol ve t he carbon-di oxi de content of t he ai r, the carbon­
di oxi de and l i me di ssol ved in the sea, l i mestone formati on,
and c l i mati c change. Li mestone rocks are a keystone i n
thi s structure because they are great reservoi rs of carbon
di oxi de as wel l as of l i me. Si nce l i me i s sol ubl e i n aci d
water, l i mestones di ssol ve and recrystal l i ze easi l y. They
l o
coquina, formed recentl y of shel l s
and fragments l oosel y cemented.
Chalk i s a l i mestone made of ti ny
protozoon shel l s. Ol der shel l
l i mestones may contai n fossil
brachi opods, bryozoans, coral s,
and cri noi ds. Some of the oldest
known sedi mentary rocks are l i me­
stones formed from al gae.
consi st of a mass af smal l concre­
tions, each bui l t up l ayer upon
l ayer around some smal l nucl eus.
The resul t i ng rock i s composed of
spheri cal grai ns. Ool itic l i me­
stones may be formed i n shal l ow
water. Each grai n graws as it i s
rai l ed by waves or currents.
weather rapi dl y in humi d cl i mates; very sl owl y in ar i d ones,
where they are good cl i f formers-as at Grand Canyon.
li mestones var y f r om al most unconsol i dated masses of
shel l s ( s uch as t he ki nd shown on p. 1 26) t o compact, crys­
tal l i ne rocks. I nti matel y connected wi th pl ant and ani mal
l ife, t hey are a ri ch source of fossi l s ( pp. 1 30- 1 32) . li me­
stones r i ch i n cl ay are known as mar ls. They al so grade
i nto shal es and i nto sandstones. Some contai n si l i ca con­
creti ons i n t he form of chert, fl i nt, or chal cedony ( pp. 80-
81 ) . A carbonate rock which contai ns cal ci um and mag­
nesi um carbonate i s a dol omi ti c l i mestone or a true dol o­
mite ( p. 65) .
The economi c i mportance of l i mestones is al most be­
yond esti mati on. Li mestones are wi del y used for road
metal , i n concrete, and for l i me. Shal y- l i mestones are a
source of cement. Lead, zi nc, fl uori te, sul f ur, and oi l de­
posi ts are often associ ated wi th l i mestones.
TUFA i s a l i ght, parous l i mestone
often col ored wi th i ron. I t forms
i r spri ngs, where cal ci te may be
deposi ted on water pl ants, twi gs,
or debri s. I n caves, the secondary
deposi t of cal ci u m carbonate (trav­
ertine) forms fowstone, coveri ng
wal l s and foor and someti mes
formi ng stal acti tes and stal ag­
mi tes (pp. 63-64) .
form as l i me ecrystol l i zes to o
greater or l esser extent. These
l i mestones ore cl osel y aki n to
marbl es {p. 1 34) but ore consi d­
ered sedi mentary rocks when
there i s no i ndi cati on t hat they
hove been deformed by press ure.
Crystal l i ne l i mestones used for
decorati on and ornamentati on
ore someti mes sol d as marbl e.
Ohi o
1 27
1 28
CONGLOMERATES are sedi mentary rocks composed of
rounded pebbl es one-fourth of an i nch in di ameter or
l arger, cemented in a matri x of fner materi al . In ti l l ite,
a congl omerate of consol i dated gl aci al t i l l , the unassorted
fragments may range from gravel si ze to great boul ders.
The l arger ones may show typi cal gl aci al scratches. The
coarse materi al s whi ch form congl omerates are deposi ted
cl ose to shore at the mouths of swift ri vers or canyons, i n
al l uvi al fans, or i n del tas. The pebbl es i n congl omerates
are frequentl y quartz or quartzite. The cement may be
i ron oxi de, si l i ca, cal ci um carbonate or, occasi onal l y,
cl ay. Congl omerates grade of i nto sandstones.
Congl omerates i n whi ch the fragments are shar p and
angul ar because they are freshl y broken and not worn
i n transport are cal l ed brecci as. The vari ous ki nds of
brecci as have l ittl e i n common other than the angul ar
shape of t hei r components. Some are of vol cani c or i gi n,
some represent cemented material s i n tal us sl opes or al ­
from Texas-fragments
cemented by si l i ca.
l uvial fans, and some have formed
al ong faul t zones. Brecci as may
be barel y consol i dated or ti ghtl y
cemented, dependi ng on thei r
age and on conditi ons of forma­
tion. Commonl y they are formed
c l ose to the poi nt of ori gi n of the
Mi chi gan
Cl i nton, N. Y.
CHEMI CALLY FORMED sedi mentary rocks are per haps
the most i mportant commerci al l y. Some l i mestones ar e
preci pi tated chemi cal l y fr om sea water. An hydri te, gyp­
sum, and hal i te ( pp. 66-69) for m deposi ts l arge enough
t o be consi dered chemi cal sedi mentary r ocks as wel l as
mi neral s. They are often resi dues from sea water, whi ch
contai ns about 3Y l bs. of chemi cal sol i ds i n every 1 00 l bs.
of water. Such deposi ts general l y i ndi cate an ari d cl i mate
at the ti me of thei r formati on .
Other sedi mentary rocks an d fuel s are formed t hrough
bi ochemi cal act i on, and of t hese coal and oi l ( pp. 1 42-
1 45) are t he best known. Bacteri a may ai d i n t he forma­
ti on of i ron deposi ts i n swamps and s hal l ow l akes, and
may be i n part responsi bl e for the great I ron Range depos­
its. Bi ochemi cal acti on may account for the preci pi tati on
of manganese al so. Di atomaceous earth i s a fne deposi t
of mi croscopi c pl ant skel etons-for mi ng l arge, pur e de­
posits of s i l i ca.
Marl and
1 30
Arrowheads found buri ed ofer
evi dence of human l i fe. At l eft, an
anci ent fol som poi nt from New
Mexi co. At ri ght, mar i ne fossi l s
found al ong Lake Champl ai n,
N. Y. , show that t hi s l ake was
once an ar m of the sea.
FOSSI LS are the remai ns, pri nts, or other i ndi cati ons of
former pl ant or ani mal l ife found natural l y buri ed in rock.
Worl d- wi de studi es over the past century i ndi cate that the
ol der the rocks, the si mpl er the types of pl ant and ani mal
fossi l s found i n t hem. The fossi l s have therefore been used
to establ i sh the age of the rock whi ch encl oses t hem. Fos­
si l s show that many thousands of ki nds of pl ants and ani ­
mal s, common i n the past, no l onger exi st, and that most
of those l i vi ng today resembl e strongl y the fossi l forms
found i n rel ati vel y recent rocks.
I n additi on to tel l i ng the detai l s of l ife i n the past and
t he story of such uni que ani mal s as gi ant di nosaurs and
titanotheres, fossi l s al so tel l of past cl i mates. Col oni al cor­
al s i n Green l and rocks attest to warmer condi ti ons i n the
past than today, and i mpri nts of fr and spruce i n uncon­
sol i dated cl ays near the surface record the penetrati on of
gl aci al col d far to the sout h. Fossi l s are al so used to de­
ter mi ne the mar i ne or fresh-water ori gi n of rocks.
The occurrence of fossi l s is both rare and common.
Onl y a t i ny fracti on of the total n umber of l i vi ng thi ngs
has ever been preserved as fossi l s, and yet certai n l ayers
of rock or strata are made a l most enti rel y of shel l s, teeth,
pl ant remai ns, and even of bone.
FOSSI LS are preserved in many
ways. The s i mpl est is the i ntact
preservati on of the hard parts of a
pl ant or an an i mal , as i l l ustrated
on p. 1 30. Wood, bone, teeth, and
ot her har d parts are preserved i n­
tact for rel at i vel y short peri ods.
I n another type of fossi l i zati on,
buri ed pl ant or ani mal materi al s
decompose, l eavi ng a resi dual fi l m
of carbon behi nd. Thi s may mar k
the form of a l eaf or of some
si mpl e ani mal . On a l arger scal e
t hi s process i s responsi bl e for our
great deposi ts of coal .
Someti mes buri ed materi al is
gradual l y r epl aced by s i l i ca and
ot her materi al l i ke cal ci te, dol o­
mi te, or pyri t e from sol uti ons which
permeate the rock i n a process
cal l ed petri facti on. These repl ace­
ments form another very common
t ype of foss i l .
Probabl y t he most spectacul ar of
al l repl acements i s that of wood by
agate or opal as a resul t of t he ac­
ti on of hot, s i l i ca-bear i ng waters.
Thi s forms petri fed wood. The re­
pl acement may be so mi nute and
compl ete that even t he detai l s of
cel l ul ar structure are preserved. The
best-known exampl es are preserved
i n the Petri fed Forest Nati onal Park
i n Ari zona.
I l l i n oi s
Ari zona
( enl arge
i n pyrite
western Il l i noi s
1 31
i mpressi on
northwest Ohio
northern Ohi o
common fossi l forms. They are i m­
pressi ons, and so difer from i ntact
preservati on and repl acements. A
footpri nt, as that of a di nosaur, i s
a good exampl e of a mol d. The i m­
pressi on l eft i n soft mud or si l t may
harden before more sedi ment f l l s
i t i n and provi des mater i al for a
new l ayer of rock. If the sedi ment
l at er consol i dates and t he rock i s
eventual l y br oken open, t he ori g­
i nal i mpri nt wi l l be found bel ow,
and fl l i ng it wi l l be a cast of the
undersi de of the di nosaur' s foot.
When shel l s are buri ed in san d
or mud, a mol d of the outer surface
of the shel l i s formed. Percol ati ng
waters may di ssol ve the shel l mate­
ri al compl etel y, and the mol d wi l l
t hen be t he foss i l record. Later, per­
col ati ng waters may refl l t he cav­
ity wi th cal ci um carbonate or si l i ca,
formi ng a cast whi ch wi l l on its
outer surface compl etel y dupl icate
the external form of the shel l .
Pal eontol ogy, t he study of pl ant
and ani mal fossi l s and thei r h i s­
tories, i s an i mportant and exci ti ng
br anch of t he sci ence of geol ogy.
The study of smal l fossi l forms (whi ch
are known as mi crofossi l s) has re­
centl y yi el ded a great deal of new
i nformati on.
Metamor phi c r ocks are rocks whi ch have been changed.
Changes ma
be barel y vi si bl e, or ma
be so great t hat
i t i s i mpossi bl e to determi ne what the ori gi nal rock once
was. Al l ki nds of rocks can be metamorphosed-sedi men­
tary, i gneous, and other metamor phi c rocks. The changes
usual l y br i ng about a new cr
ystal l i ne structure, the for­
mati on of new mi neral s, and someti mes a coarseni ng of
Metamor phi sm resul ts from heat, pressure, or permea­
ti on by other substances. Pressure and heat i ncrease wi th
depth i n the earth' s crust (A, i n the i l l ustrati on above) and
may al so resul t from crustal movements ( B) or i gneous
activity ( C) . Rocks may be permeated by gases or fui ds
from i gneous materi al ( D) or by the percol ati ng of mi ner al ­
bear i ng gr ound-water.
1 33
1 34
SI MPLE METAMORPHI C ROCKS is a conveni ent term
appl ied to rocks formed by the di rect al terati on of sedi ­
mentary rocks where the changes are mai nl y recrystal ­
l i zati on . Few, i f any, new mi ner al s are formed. Some of
these rocks show paral l el structures; others do not.
Sl ate resul ts from metamorphi sm of shal e, and often
traces of the ori gi nal beddi ng can be seen. Sl ate is fre­
quentl y of a bl ue-gray col or but may be green, red, or
brown. I t breaks easi l y al ong a fat cl eavage pl ane and
can be spl it i nto s heets used f or roofng or fagstones.
Someti mes s l ate shows fol di ng and wri nkl i ng.
Marbles ar e recrystal l i zed l i mestones, normal l y whi te,
but often ti nted by iron oxi de, carbon, or serpenti ne to
attracti ve shades of yel l ow, brown, green, or bl ack. Li me­
stones and dol omi ti c l i mestones may be s l i ghtl y al tered
by percol ati ng waters and are often cal l ed mar bl es, but
true marbl es are the resul t of metamorphi sm i nvol vi ng heat
and pressure. Secondary mi neral s may form and crystal s
may show di stortion. Marbl es do not often devel op the
paral l el bandi ng and mi neral arrangement seen i n sl ates
and schi sts.
Quartzites are usual l y metamorphosed sandstones
whi ch have recrystal l i zed so that, i n breaki ng, t hey break
t hrough the quartz grai ns i nstead of through the cement,
as i n sandstones. The grai n structure i n quartzite i s not
nearl y as cl ear as i n sandstones. Quartzi te, l i ke marbl e,
i s a massi ve metamorphi c rock, very hard and tough.
Hornfels ar e cl ays or shal es whi ch have been meta­
morphosed through the acti on of heat from nearby i g­
neous rocks. The hard, recrystal l i zed rock may retai n i ts
sedi mentary structure, but garnet and other secondary
mi neral s may form. The col or is usual l y dark; the rock i s
spotted or banded, and may be confused wi th basal t,
especi al l y al ong contacts.
Pennsyl vani a
Georgi a
Hartmannsdorf, Saxony
New York
Del l Rapi ds, S. Dak.
1 35
PHYLLI TES AND SCHI STS represent t he more hi ghl y
metamorphosed rocks. Phyl l ite provi des the transi ti on,
bei ng more metamor phosed than s l ate but l ess than
schi sts. Fi ne grai ns of mica gi ve i t a si l ky l uster. The schi sts
are coarser t han phyl l ite, wi th a consi derabl e amount of
mi ca or other secondary mi neral s. They break i n a wavy,
uneven surface; this property is cal l ed schistosity. Schists
are named for t hei r most characteristic mi neral :
Mi ca Schist i s usual l y a hi ghl y metamor phosed shal e
composed mai nl y of many smal l fakes of mi ca, or i ented
roughl y paral l el , and quartz. Texture vari es from fne to
coarse, and ei ther staurol ite or garnet may be present.
Hornblende Schist i s mai nl y hor nbl ende and quartz.
I t i s dark i n col or, and whi l e the mi neral s have a paral l el
ori entati on, hor nbl ende schi st does not break cl eanl y.
Chl orite Schist contai ns chl orite as a metamorphi c
mi ner al i nstead of mi ca; t hi s gi ves i t a greeni sh col or.
I t has typi cal schist ori entati on.
Quartz Schi st forms on furt her metamorphi sm of i m­
pure quartzite. Muscovi te mica usual l y devel ops as a
secondary mi ner al , and paral l el structures al so form.
li ght-col ored.
1 36
The fol l owi ng mi neral s are commonl y found i n metamorphi c rocks.
Actinolite in schi sts, gnei ss Kyanite i n sch i sts (p. 4)
and quartzite (p. 1 00)
Micas muscovi te, bi oti te,
Chlorite in phy l l i tes and and ph l ogopi te i n
schi sts ( p. 1 06) schi sts, gnei ss,
Diopside i n marbl es ( p. 1 01 )
and marbl es ( p. 96)
Feldspars mai nl y from i gneous
Ol i vi ne i n marbl es ( p. 1 06)
contacts ( p. 98) Quartz in schi sts, gnei ss,
Garnets nearly al l ki nds-
and quartzi te ( p. 76)
i n schi sts, marbl e� Serpentine (p. 74) i n marbl es,
and phyl l i tes ( p. 1 04) and talc soapstones, and schi sts
Graphite in some s�hi sts and
( pp. 74 and 1 07)
marbl e ( p. 62) Staurolite i n schi sts (p. 1 08)
Hornblende i n metamorphosed
bu8Î c rock8 (p. 1 00) Page numbers i ndicate i l l ustrations .
Li ngoutte, Vosges
Pennsyl vani a
New Yor k
Chester, Vermont
1 37
1 38
Nassengr ub, Bohemi a
Bristenstock, Switzerl and
GNEI SS (pronounced ni ce) may be si mpl y metamor­
phosed gran i te, or a far more compl ex rock wi th possi bl y
four or fi ve di ferent ori gi ns, ei t her i gneous or sedi men­
tary. I t may a l so i ncl ude metamorphi c rocks whi ch are i n­
vaded by igneous materi al s s o t hat the r ock becomes a
compl ex mixture ( mi gmati te). Schists are often i nvaded
i n this way, produci ng rocks whi ch contai n more fel dspar
and quartz t han ordi nary schi sts. The new mi neral s are
often in smal l l ensl i ke i ntrusi ons. Gnei ss is hard to defne
or descri be because i t i s so vari ed. I n general , i t i s a
coarse-textured rock wi th the mi neral s in paral l el streaks
or bands, but l acki ng schistosi ty. I t i s rel ati vel y ri ch i n
fel dspar and usual l y contai ns mi ca or one of the other
dark, rock-formi ng mi neral s.
Gneiss is classi fed by i ts most conspi cuous mi neral or
accordi ng to i ts ori gi n or structures. Characteri sti cs are
usual l y better seen in the fel d t han in hand speci mens.
Stengert s, Bavari a
Sewen, Vosges Mts. , F ronce
Muscovite Gneiss i s one of the most common ki nds,
wi th a pal e sal t-and-pepper appearance, t hough bi oti te
mi ca i s common i n gnei ss al so. Whi l e the name gives no
c l ue as t o t he or i gi n, muscovi te and bi oti te gnei sses may
for m from hi gh l y metamorphosed, shal y sedi ments.
Grani te Gneiss i s named to i ndi cate that i t i s a
metamor phosed gr anite, t hough thi s ori gi n is di fcul t to
establ ish because of the process of graniti zat i on ( p. 1 40) .
Granite gnei ss i s ri ch i n fel dspars. The mi ca or hor nbl ende
i n i t i s ar r anged i n paral l el bands.
Hornbl ende Gneiss i s a dark rock, much darker t han
bi otite gnei ss, i n whi ch paral l el -ori ented hornbl ende re­
pl aces mica. I t i s probabl y the end resul t i n the meta­
morphosi s of basi c i gneous rocks.
I njection Gneiss is gnei ss whi ch has been permeated
by i gneous materi al s duri ng metamorphi sm. li ke schists
whi ch are t hus a l tered, i t i s al so known as mi gmati te.
1 39
1 40
GRANI TI ZATI ON i s a process in
which some form of i gneous mate­
ri al or another i nvades sedi mentary
or metamorphi c rock, produci ng
mixtures whi ch eventual l y al ter the
rock so that i n texture an d compo­
si ti on it becomes l i ke granite. Thi s
process may be associ ated wi th
great bathol i ths or it may or i gi nate
wi th materi al s comi ng from an un­
known depth i n the crust of t he
ear t h. The i nvasi on may not even
i nvol ve gases or l i qui ds as we or­
di nari l y know t hem. Gradati ons of
rock from grani te to gnei ss over
wi de areas i s evi dence for at l east
one form of gr ani ti zati on.
One exampl e of t he process
woul d be the i nvasi on of gnei ss (A)
by sol uti ons contai ni ng quartz and
fel dspar t hat separate t he gnei ss
al ong paral l el bands. I n a l ater
stage ( B) some parts of the gnei ss
are transformed whi l e others retai n
t hei r ori gi nal structure. As gran it­
i zati on conti nues, the form and
structure of t he gnei ss mi neral s
change ( C), t hough traces of the
paral l el ar rangement sti l l remai n.
Fi nal l y the ori gi nal r ock i s com­
pl etel y absorbed, and the resul ti ng
rock shows no traces at al l of the
gnei ss. I n structure and composi ­
ti on, it is grani te.
M. Ameri ca
S. Ameri ca
Afri ca
Asi a
Austral i a
Oceani a
Producti on r ank
( i ncl udi ng
some esti mates)
Rocks and mi neral s are t he basi s of our ci vi l i zati on. For
the l ife we l i ve toda
y we must have meta l l i c and non­
metal l i c ores, t he fuel s, and the construct i on materi al s
such as· cements, cl ays, sand, gravel , and bui l di ng stones.
Then there i s t he soi l , perhaps the most val uabl e rock of
al l . Sand, cl ays, road rock, and soi l have a l ow val ue per
ton compared to metal l i c ores, but because of the amounts
used t hei r overal l val ue is enormous. Si nce ores have been
di scussed ear l i er, t hi s secti on deal s mai nl y wi th fuel s, soi l s,
and constructi on materi al s.
Much of t he troubl e between nati ons can be traced to
the fact t hat t he rocks, mi neral s, and fuel s ar e not equal l y
di stri buted over t he earth. Some nati ons have; others have
not. Bl ood has been shed over gol d, si l ver, i ron, coal , oi l ,
and urani um. Thi s i s sti l l a cri tical matter f or us al l .
1 41
Pennsyl vani a
COAL is the fuel whi ch made the i ndustri al revol uti on
possi bl e. About a bi l l i on and a hal f tons are sti l l mi ned
annual l y (500 mi l l i on tons i n the Un ited States) . Coal i s
an organi c sedi mentary rock consi sti ng of the al tered re­
mai ns of pl ants. I t i s formed by a sl ow seri es of changes
marked by a l oss of water and vol ati l e substances and a
correspondi ng i ncrease in the amount of "fxed carbon. "
Coal i s cl assi fed by t he rel ative amount of these three
groups of materi al s. Peat, whi ch contai ns about 80 per
cent moi sture, is not consi dered a form of coal .
Li gnite, the l owest rank or ki nd of coal , has a heat­
i ng val ue of 7,400 Br itish Thermal Un its ( B. T. U. ) . It i s
brown i n col or and breaks down i nto powdered or faky
fragments when stored. I t burns wi th a smoky fame.
Bi tumi nous or soft coal s are bl ack coal s whi ch often
have a cubi c fracture and a dul l l uster. They yi el d from
9, 700 to 1 5,400 B. T. U. and total 90 per cent of the coal
mi ned. The hi gher grades of bi tumi nous coal store wel l
and burn wi th an al most smokel ess fame.
-1 00%
1 '  _ _ |_ Æ c.. ._
sub- bi t umi nous semi - semi - anthraci te
l i gni te
bi t umi nous bi t umi nous anthraci te
vol at i l e matter -moi sture
Anthracite or hard coal i s hard and durabl e. I t
stores wel l and burns wi th a very short smokel ess fame.
Anthracite has a conchoi dal fracture and a bl ack shi ny
l uster-someti mes i r i descent. I t forms when fol di ng or
metamorphi sm dr i ves a l arger amount of vol ati l e matter
out of soft coal than woul d otherwi se be l ost.
Most coal s i n eastern and central Uni ted States were
formed dur i ng the Pennsyl vani an peri od when a warm cl i ­
mate favored the rapi d growth of fer nl i ke pl ants. The
coal s of western Uni ted States were formed many mi l l i ons
of years l ater. The coal - beari ng rocks are someti mes
thousands of feet t hi ck, wi th l ayers of coal up to 1 00
feet t hi ck l yi ng between l ayers of sandstones and s hal es.
The worl d' s reserves of coal are
very roughl y esti mated at a total
of about seven tri l l ion tons, of whi ch
over hal f i s i n North Ameri ca. Not
al l of these reserves are usabl e at
the present pri ce of coal .
1 43
ANTI CLI NES or u pward fol ds
provi de traps for oi l and gas.
Occasional l y the surface pattern
i ndicates underl yi ng structures.
FAULTS mar k movement al ong
breaks i n the earth' s crust. Oi l
may seep to the su rface or accu­
mul ate al ong or agai nst them.
PETROLEUM i s the proper name for what most peopl e
cal l oi l . I t i s a compl ex mi xture of compounds of carbon
and hydrogen, for whi ch new uses ar e constantl y bei ng
found. The commerci al producti on of petrol eum began
onl y a century ago. Now the United States produces over
two bi l l ion barrel s a year and i mports oi l i n addi ti on to
thi s. Nearl y al l i nternal combusti on engi nes depend on
petrol eum fuel s and l ubri cants. .
Petrol eum is of mari ne ori gi n and probabl y represents
the remai ns of mi croscopi c pl ants whi ch settl ed i n the
sand and mud of shal l ow bays. Deposi ts of oi l beari ng
sands and shal es are pl enti ful , but fol di ng, faul ti ng, or
ot her acti on i n the sedi mentary strata ( as i l l ustrated
above) was necessary to form the structures for the accu-
asphal t
mul ati on of the petrol eum. Such
accumul ati ons are not underground
l akes of oi l , but are areas where
the spaces between sand grai ns or
the pores i n carbonate rocks are
saturated wi th petrol eum.
SALT DOMES, pushi ng up
through Gulf Coost sedi ments
and deformi ng them, make suit­
abl e structures to trap oi l .
confned where ti l ted l ayers have
been worn down and l ater hori­
zontal l ayers deposited on them.
The most val ued oi l s have a parafn base-that i s, t he
heavi er "chai n" t ype chemical s are t hose of parafn.
Another form of petrol eum has an asphal t bas e and i s
ri cher i n "ri ng" type chemi cal s. Many wel l s yi el d a mix­
ture of both t hese types, and chemi cal l y the oi l s contai n
many compl ex hydrocarbon compounds. On one hand,
petrol eum compounds grade of i nt o natural gas ( p. 1 47).
On the other, they grade i nto the sol i d bi tumens and
natural asphal t.
Because of i ts great val ue, petrol eum has sti mul ated
more geol ogi c expl orati on and research than any other
mi neral or rock. Petrol eum surveys extend i nto wi l der­
ness areas and even out to sea. Tremendous reserves whi ch
can be recovered economi cal l y have been di scovered; i n
the Uni ted States al one these
amount to some 30 bi l l i on barrel s.
As a by-product of petrol eum re­
search our knowl edge of sedi men­
t ary rocks and of thei r structures
has been greatl y i ncreased.
1 45
1 46
Oi l shal e wi th
fossi l fi sh
Wyomi ng
OI L SHALE contai ns sol i d hydro­
carbons mi xed wi th p
ant remai ns.
Extensive deposi ts of gray, brown,
or bl ack oi l shal e are foun d i n the
Green Ri ver formati on of Col orado
and i n Utah, Wyomi ng, and West­
ern Canada. Oil shal e has been
mi ned and used for some ti me i n
Scot l and. I n the Uni ted States i t
cannot compete wi t h . our r i ch oi l
"pool s. " Shoul d our r i cher deposits
become dep
eted, we have wel l
over 1 00 bi l l i on barrel s of oi l
l ocked up i n oi l shal es. Dur i ng
Worl d War I I an experi mental
pl ant successful l y made oi l from oi l
shal e. A ton of average oi l shal e,
upon heati ng, yi el ds about 25 gal ­
l ons of petrol eum, nearl y 1 0,000
cubi c feet of natural gas and am­
moni um compounds.
I t i s certai n that fol di ng and other crustal movements
produced most ohhe traps in which oi l accumul ated. The
oi l and gas apparentl y mi grated from a source rock
through the porous sands unti l i t was trapped agai nst an
i m¡ervi ous surface and sl owl y accumul ated. Wi thout these
crustar traps petrol eum may remai n di stri buted i n shal es
and 'sands, too di fuse to be produced economi cal l y at
present pri ces. Oi l s hal es and
al so oi l sands contai n h uge reserves
of sol i d hydrocarbons, from whi ch
oi l can be made. How they wi l l be
uti l i zed i s, at the present moment,
sti l l an open questi on.
NATURAL GAS i s found wi th
petrol eum, t hough some oi l fel ds
have very l i tt l e gas and some gas
fel ds yi el d no commerci al oi l .
Chemical l y, natural gas i s a mi x­
ture of the l i ghter chemi cal s found
i n petrol eum-mai nl y methane wi th
butane, propane, and other gases.
Carbon di oxi de, ni trogen, hydrogen
sul fde and even hel i um may be
present al so.
Producti on of nat ural gas i n the
United States averages about ni ne
tri l l i on cubi c feet annual l y. Reserves
are enormous. Over 75 per cent of
natural gas goes i nto i ndustri al
uses. Some i s l i quefed as bottl ed
gas, and natural gasol i ne i s an i m­
portant by-product. From 1 Y2 to 2
gal l ons of gasol i ne may be ob­
tai ned from 1 000 cubi c feet of
WELL Fl ELD p roduci ng
gas fr om t he upper zone,
oi l and gas from the mi d­
dl e zone, and oi l bel ow.
natural gas. Natural gas gasol i ne i s produced at the rate
of over 5 bi l l i on gal l ons a year, account i ng for nearl y
hal f of al l U. S. gasol i ne. Compressi on pl ants at t he wel l ­
heads extract t he gasol i ne from t he "wet" gas. Over a
quarter of a mi l l i on mi l es of pi pel i nes, some more t han a
thousand mi l es l ong, carry nat ural gas and petrol eum from
wel l s to i ndustr i al centers and citi es.
I n former ti mes natural gas pres­
sure on a pool of oi l was frequent­
l y al l owed to cause a "gusher. "
When thi s happened, a jet of oi l
was s hot several hundred feet i nto
t he ai r and wasted.
1 47
farmed i n pl ace by t he gr adual
decay of parent materi al . When
cut t hrough t hey show a gradual
transi ti on from fresh r ock u p to
decayed rock to subsoi l and top­
soi l . Resi dual soi l s usual l y form
sl owl y. The deepeni ng soi l l ayer
protects the rock beneath from
further chemical act i on. Types of
resi dual soi l s depend on the rock
from which they form, cl i mate,
and other factors.
SOI L i s the best known, most compl ex rock and, fortu­
natel y, one which has been studi ed a l ong ti me. The
physi cal and chemi cal weat heri ng of surface rock ( parent
materi al ) wi th the addi ti on of organi c materi al , forms
soi l . Pl ants and ani mal s (especi al l y mi croscopi c forms)
contri bute greatl y to soi l formati on, as do cl i mate, vege­
tati on, ti me, s l ope, and drai nage. The resul t of centuri es
of acti vity i s a soi l mantl e from a few i nches to a hundred
feet thi ck, t hough the average depth of soi l i s onl y a foot
or so. Si nce most l i fe depends on soi l s, they shoul d be pre­
served and ski l l f ul l y managed.
vel oped on parent materi al that
has been moved by wi nd, water,
or i ce. Huge deposi ts of wi nd­
bl own si l t serve as the parent
materi al for t he l oess soi l s i n the
western prai ri es. I n t he Mi ssis­
si ppi val l ey and al ong western
streams are deposi ts of water­
borne al l uvi al materi al s on whi ch
some very ri ch soi l s have formed.
I n northern states gl aci al debri s
is often the parent materi al .
TROPI CAL RED SOI LS ore wel l ·
devel oped, wel l -drai ned soi l s re­
sul ti ng from the deep l eachi ng
acti on of much rai n and the
chemi cal acti on of worm ai r.
These may be resi dual soi l s of
great thi ckness. The l eachi ng and
oxi dati on make poor soi l whi ch
may be exhausted after o few
years of cu l ti vati on. The foi l of
the Mayan civi l i zati ons has been
attri buted to soi l exhausti on.
Soi l s may be cl assi fi ed i n a hal f dozen ways, accor di ng
to var i ous properti es. They may be cl assi fed on the basi s
of texture ( si ze of parti cl e) , as c l ayey, si l ty, or sandy.
Ot her c l assi fi cati ons have been based on col or, parent
materi al , t ype of crop raised, and many other bases. Most
modern c l assi fcati ons begi n with t hree great divi si ons or
zones rangi ng from i mmature t o mature soi l s. Three ex­
ampl es of wel l -devel oped soi l s are ( 1 ) the tropi cal red
soi l s (true and modi fi ed l ateri tes), (2) the northern forest
soil s ( podsol s) and thei r modi fcati ons, and (3) the grass­
l and soi l s ( chernozem and prai ri e soi l s) .
l ustrate di ferent condi ti ons from
those above. These gray soil s
form under beds of spruce, pi ne,
and fr needl es whi ch are aci d i n
composi ti on and decoy sl owl y.
The organi c and i norgani c ma­
teri al s mi x poorl y. Many of these
soi l s of cool er regi ons have not
been al tered enough to make
them good producers wi thout spe­
ci al handl i ng.
I l l i noi s
CLAY was used by pri mi tive men to make pottery not
l ong after they frst began to use stones as tool s and
weapons. After centuri es of servi ce, cl ay i s sti l l essenti al
in many i ndustri es. About 35 mi l l i on tons are mi ned an­
nual l y and are used i n bri cks, pottery, chi naware, cerami c
pi pe, dr i l l i ng muds, and for many other purposes. Cl ays
are a mixture of si l i ca, al umi na, and water. Clay parti cl es
ar e s mal l -l ess than 0. 0001 i nch. They sti ck together but
are sl i ppery when moi st. Cl ays may come from grani tic
rocks, as a weatheri ng product of the fel dspars. They al so
form from weathered shal es whi ch came mai nl y from
cl ay mi neral s ori gi nal l y. Cl ay deposits form on l ake bot­
toms and i n other qui et water, someti mes with annual
l ayers (varves). One of t he cl ay mi neral s i s kaol i n ( p. 49) .
el ectri cal
i nsul ator
l i mestone
shal e
PORTLAND CEMENT i s the best-known i ngredi ent of
artifci al stone. I t has l argel y repl aced the ol der natural
cement or hydraul i c l i mestone. When l i mestone contai ni ng
s i l ica and cl ay was burned, t he l i me t hat formed woul d
set under water, hence the name hydraul i c l i me.
Now, l i mestone and shal e are crushed, dri ed, mi xed i n
t he correct proporti ons, and ground t o a fne powder. The
powdered mixture i s burned i n a s l opi ng rotary ki l n at
about 2700° F t o form a gl assy cl i nker. The cl i nker i s
crushed, a smal l amount of gypsum i s added, and the
mi xture i s reground to form cement. Over 200 mi l l i on
barrel s of Port l and cement are produced each year.
Cement i s mi xed wi th sand, crushed rock, and water to
make concrete.
1 5 1
1 52
Wyomi ng
FULLER' S EARTH i s cl ay or a si l ty cl ay materi al con­
tai ni ng over hal f si l ica, val ued for i ts decol ori zi ng prop­
erti es. Ful l er' s earth absorbs dark organ i c matter from
fats, oi l s, and greases. Fi rst used t o "ful l " or degrease
wool en cl oth, f ul l er' s earth i s used to bl each mi neral and
vegetabl e oi l s. I t has the greasy feel of cl ay and usual l y
breaks up in water. Col or vari es from white to yel l ow,
brown, and bl ue.
BENTONI TE, frst devel oped, l i ke f ul l er' s earth, for
bl eachi ng, has t ur ned out t o have even more i mportant
uses. I t i s used i n soaps and washi ng compounds and i s
added to cl ays to i ncrease t hei r pl asti ci ty. Some bentonite,
used as an ai d i n wel l dri l l i ng, expands and seal s of
water-beari ng sands. Other vari eti es swel l l itt l e when
wet. Bentonite i s al so used for paper fl l er and i n ad­
hesi ves. I t i s a mi xture of at l east two a l umi num and mag­
nesi um si l i cate mi neral s, and is usual l y regarded as
weathered vol cani c ash.
the l owest val ue per ton of any rock or mi neral , yet al l
three ar e i ndi spensabl e i n modern constructi on. Sand i n
pl aces i s s o pl entif ul that i t shapes t h e l andscape, gi vi ng
beaches and deserts a qui et beauty of thei r own. Sand i s a
size · term; al t hough sand is usual l y composed l argel y of
quartz, pure quartz sand ( used in the manufacture of
gl ass) i s rare. On tropi cal shores, coral ( l i me) sands are
common. Gypsum sands make up the snowy dunes i n the
White Sands Nat i onal Monument. Other sands are ri ch
i n magnet i te, monazite, gar net, i l meni te, and ruti l e. Some
are mi ned as ores. But i t i s common quartz sand that hel ps
make our concrete roads, bri dges, and bui l di ngs.
Gravel , of gl aci al or stream ori gi n, contai ns l arger
pebbl es from a quarter of an i nch up, cobbl es, and even
boul ders, i n a sand matri x. Washed, screened, and sorted,
gravel is used for fl l and i n concrete. li mestone, basal t,
and gr an i te are crushed for road bui l di ng, rai l road bal l ast,
and concrete work.
1 53
BUI LDI NG STONES are those cut to si ze for bui l di ngs
or monuments. Ornamental stones are those used for
fni shi ng or decorati on. Stone al so has been used for
si dewal ks, cur bi ng, and pavi ng bl ocks. For bui l di ng use,
ease of quarryi ng, transportati on, durabi l ity. col or,
Waus au, Wi s.
Aberdeen, Scotl and
1 54 Tennessee
GRANITE i s famous for its
beauty, strength, and du rabi l i ty
-hence its wi de use i n monu­
ments and bui l di ngs. Grani te
tokes o hi gh pol i sh and is resist­
ant to weather i ng. I ts hardness
and l ock of beddi ng make quar·
ryi ng di fcul t. Gr anites for bui l d­
i ng us es are cl assi fed by gr ai n
si ze-wi th pr eference for fne­
grai ned rock.
TRAPROCK i s t he quarryman' s
t erm for di abase, basal t , or gab­
bro. These hard, durabl e rocks
are l i mi ted in bui l di ng use be­
cause t hei r iron mi neral s gi ve a
rusty stai n as they weather. Trap­
rock i s excel l ent as crushed rock
and is wi del y used. Other i gne­
ous rocks-rhyol i tes and fel sites
-are l ocal l y u sed as bui l di ng
SANDSTONE i s rel ati vel y easy
to quarry because it is bedded.
Many sandstones are attractive
and durabl e, and once were very
fashi onabl e in Eastern ci ti es. Po­
rous sandstone may not weather
wel l and speci al treatment may
be needed i n col d regi ons. Other­
wi se, sandstones make attractive
bui l di ng stones. Col or and tex­
t ure ore vari abl e .
weatheri ng characteri sti cs, and freedom from i ron mi n­
eral s are i mportant. Of t he bui l di ng stones whi ch ar e sti l l
wi del y used, the fol l owi ng general types are the best
known. Many di ferent ki nds of marbl es, l i mestones, and
gr ani tes ar e used for vari ed efects.
LI MESTONE from near Bedford
i n central I ndi ana i s a wel l - known
bui l di ng stone, wi del y used for
publ i c bui l di ngs. Bedford l i me­
stone i s whi te, even-textured and
ool i tic, someti mes packed wi th
smal l fossi l s. I t i s easi l y quarri ed
and uniform i n col or. Many other
ki nds of l i mestones are used for
bui l di ng in many parts of the
Uni ted Stales.
MARBLE for bui ldi ng use also
i ncl udes fne-gr ai ned ornamental
l i mestones whi ch are not true
marbl es. Marbl e i s a cl assi c stone,
worked by scul ptors as wel l as
bui l ders. I tal i an white and Bel ­
gi an bl ack mar bl e are famous.
Marbl es may al so be pi nk, yel ­
l ow, and brown. They are softer
and l ess resi stant to weatheri ng
than gr ani tes.
Swanton, Vt.
SLATE i s an u n usual bui l di ng
stone used pri mari l y i n roofng
and foori ng, bl ackboards, and
el ectri cal swi tchboards. I t breaks
al ong cl eavage pl anes i n l arge
fat sheets. Col or vari es from
bl ack to green and red. Sl ate i s
du rabl e and attractive as roofng
and i n foors and patios. Most
U. S. sl ate comes from Vermont,
Mai ne, and Pennsyl vani a.
Ki l l arney, I rel and
Bangor, Pa.
1 55
SOME SELECTED BOOKS to hel p you further wi th rocks
and mi ner al s are l isted bel ow. I n addi ti on, check on state
publ i cati ons and those of t he U. S. Geol ogi cal Survey.
Al so note the many l ocal gui des to mi neral hobbi es and
mi nera l l ocal i ti es. See magazi nes for ti tl es.
Ford, Wi l l i am, DANA's TEXTBOOK OF MI NERALOGY, John Wi ley, New York,
1 954. The standard col l ege text wi th descri pti ons of al l speci es an
a mateur may fnd. Technical but thorough-an advanced book.
Longwel l and fl i nt, INTRODUCTION TO PHYSI CAL GEOLOGY, John Wi l ey,
New York, 1 955. A begi nni ng geol ogy text wi th appendi ces regard.
ing the study of rocks and mi neral s.
Mcfal l , Russel l P., GEM HUNTER' s GUIDE, Sci ence & Mechanics Pub. Co. ,
Chi cago, 1 95 1 . A compl ete gui de to Ameri can gems ond gem l o·
cal ities, for col l ectors.
Pough, frederi ck H., A fi ELD GUI DE TO RoCKS AND MI NERALS, Houghton
Mifin, Boston, 1 95 1 . You r next step i s this excel l ent gui de wi th
mi neral s cl ossi fed on o chemi cal basi s. Col or pl ates.
OF MI NERALS, Van Nostrand, New York, 1 953. A t abul ar gui de of
physical ond chemi cal tests. Advanced ond techni cal , but compl ete.
Col or pl ates.
Earth Sci ence
GeoTi mes
Box 1 357, Chi cago 90, I l l .
1 444 N Street, N.W.
Washi ngton, D. C. 20005
bi monthl y
8 ti mes yearl y
Horol ogi cal Journal
Lapi dary Journal
Rocks and Mi neral s
1 56
5250 Broadway Terrace,
Oakl and 1 B, Cal if.
Box 398, Del Mar, Cal i f.
Box 29, Peekski l l , N.Y.
monthl y
bi monthl y
bimonthl y
MUSEUMS AND EXHI BITS wi l l show you more ki nds of
rocks and mi neral s than you wi l l fnd on fel d tri ps. Use
one to suppl ement the other. Some of the museums with
l arger exhi bits are l isted bel ow.
Hol brook: Petrified Forest Na­
tional Monument Museum; Tuc·
son: University of Arizona
Berkeley: University of Cal ifornia;
Los Angeles: Los Angeles County
Museum; San Diego: Natural Hi s·
tory Museum; San Francisco: Cal ·
ifornia State Division of Mines
Museum; Santa Barbara: Santa
Barbara Museum of Natural His·
Boul der: Uni versity of Colorado
Museum; Denver: Denver Museum
of Natural History
New Hoven: Peabody Museum of
Natural Hi story
Atlanta: Georgia State Museum
I l linois
Chicago: Chicago Natural History
Museum; Urbana: University of
I l l i nois Museum of Natural His·
I ndianapolis: I ndi ana Stole Mu­
Lawrence: University of Kansas
Baton Rouge: State Universit De­
partment of Geology Museum
Cambridge: Harvard University
Mineralogital Museum; Spring­
fel d: Museum of Natural History
Ann Arbor: University of Michi­
gan Mineralogy Museum; Bloom­
field Hi l l s: Cranbrook I nstitute of
Sci ence; Houghton: Michigan Col ·
lege of Mi ni ng and Technology
Col umbi a: University of Missouri
Museum; Jeferson City: Missouri
Resources Museum
Butte: Montana School of Mines
New Jersey
Paterson: Paterson Museum; Tren­
ton: New Jersey State Museum
New Mexico
Socorro: New Mexico I nstitute of
Mining and Technology
New York
Al bany: New York State Museum;
Bufal o: Bufal o Museum of Sci­
ence; New York: American Muse­
um of Natural History
Cl evel and: Cl evel and Museum of
Natural History
Phil adel phia: Phi l adel phi a Acad­
emy of Natural Sciences; Pitts­
burgh: Carnegi e Museum
South Dakota
Rapid City: South Dakota School
af Mines and Technology
Washington, D. C.
United States National Museum
Ottawa: Noti onal Museum of
Canada; Toronto: Royal Ontario
Museum of Geology and Mi ner­
al ogy
Montreal : Redpath Museum
1 57
Asteri sks { *) i ndicate i l l ustrat i ons.
Aa, * 1 1 9
Act i nol i te
[ ak-T I N- o- l i ght] ,
23, * 1 00
Agate, * 1 2, 80- *8 1 ,
*87, 1 3 1
Al abaster, 64, 67
Al bi te, *88, 98- *99
Al exandri te, 84, *93
Al mandi te, 23, 1 04
Al umi na, 50 *84
Al umi num, 1 9, *50,
* 1 41
� Amazoni te (AM- uh- zuh-
ni ght ] , *88
l Amethyst, 78 - *79, *86
; Amphi bol e [AMfy-
" :
bowl ]. *75, 88,
* 1 00
� Andesi te, * 1 1 6
Andradi te, * 1 05
,. = Angl esite, *35
�Anhydri te, *67, 1 29
Anorthi te, 98- *99
i Ant i cl i ne, * 1 44
_ Ant i mony, 27, 28, 60
Apati te, 1 8, 1 9, *73
� Aquamari ne, *84
� Aragoni te, *65, 89
" Argenti te, *38
� Arkose, * 1 23
� Arseni c, 60
, � Arsenopyri te, *20, *60
* Asbestos, *75, *78
Augi te [AW- j i te] . * 1 7,
* 1 01
1 58
Autuni te, *55
Azurite, *33
Babbi tt metal , 45
Bari te, 1 9, *72
Basal t [ buh- SAWL T].
* 1 1 0, * 1 1 7
Bathol i ths , * 1 1 5
Bauxi te, 48- *49-50
Bead tests, *28
Bentoni te, * 1 52
Bery l , *57, *84
Bery l l i um, b
Bi oti te mi ca, *97, 1 39
Bi smuth test, *27
Bl ackj ack, *46
Bl ast furnace, *42
Bl oodstone, *87
Bl owpi pe tests, *26- *27
Borax, 1 9, *28, *70
Bornite, *32
Boul e, *92
Brecci a [ BRETCH- yuh] ,
1 1 8, * 1 28
Bri l l i ant cut, *90
Bui l di ng stones, * 1 54-
* 1 55
Cal ci te, *63- *64
crystal s, *6, * 1 6, *20
properti es, 1 8, 1 9
Carbol oy, 44
Carbon, *62, *83
Carnel i an, 80- * 81 , *87
Carnoti te, * 55 , 56
Cassi teri te, 1 9, *45
Casts, * 1 3 1 - * 1 32
Cement, Port l and, 1 5 1
Cerussi te, *35
Chabazi te, 1 02- * 1 03
Chal cedony [ kai - SED-
uh- ni h ] . 80- B l , *B7
Chal coci te, *32
Chal copyri te, 23, *32
Chal k, 64, 1 26
Chert, *80
Ch l ori te, * 1 06
Chl ori te schi st,
1 36- * 1 37
Chromite, *51
Chromi um, 28, 51
Chrysoberyl , *84
Chrysocol l a, 3 1 , *33
Chrysol i te, * 1 06
Chr ysoprase, 80- *81 ,
Chrysoti l e, *75
Ci nnabar, 1 9, *39
Ci tri ne, 78- *79, *86
Cl ay, *20, 1 24, * 1 50
Cl eavage, 20
Coal , 89, * 1 41 - 1 43
Cobal t, 28, *44
Cobal t i te, "4
Col emanite, *70
Col umbi te, *57
Conchoi dal fracture
[kon- KOY-dul l ] ,
*20, *80, * 1 42
Concreti ons , * 1 25
Congl omerates, * 1 28
Contact deposi ts, * 1 20
Copper, *31 -33, * 1 41
tests, *27, *28, *29
Coqui na, * 1 26
Coral , *65
Corundum, 1 8, 1 9, *4B
mi neral s, *84
Covel l i te, *32
"Crab Orchard' '
stone, * 1 54
Croci dol i te, 1 9, *75
Crocoi te, *51
Cryol i te, *48
Crystal s, 1 4, 1 6- 1 7
Cubi c system crystal s,
* 1 6,
Cupri te, *33
Cyani te, *48
Demantoi d, *85
Dendri tes, *52- *53
Di abase, * 1 1 3
Di amond, * 1 5, 1 8, *83
syntheti c, 92- *93
Di atoms [ DI E- uh- toms ] .
* 82, * 1 29
Di kes, * 1 1 4
Di opsi de, * 1 01
Di ori te, * 1 1 0, * 1 1 3
Dol eri te, * 1 1 3
Dol omite, 64, *65, 1 27
Drusy quartz, *77
El ectr i cal properti es, 23
Emer al d, *90, *92- *93
Emery, *48
Enstati te, 23, * 1 01
Epi dote, * 1 7, * 1 08
Ext rusi ve rocks, 1 1 0,
* 1 1 6- * 1 1 9
Fai r y crosses, * 1 08
Faul ts, * 1 44
Fel dspars, *98- *99 Hi ddeni te, 85 Meteori tes, *40, 1 0 1
Fel si te, * 1 1 0 Hornbl ende, * 1 00, Mi cas, *20, 96- *97, 1 36
Fl ame tests, *29 1 36- 1 37, 1 39 Mi crocl i ne, *88, 98- *99
F l i nt, *8, *80 Hornfel s, 1 34- * 1 35 Mi gmati te, 1 38, 1 39
Fl os ferri , 65 Hornstone, *80 Mi l l eri te, *4
Fl uorescence, 22, 46, 55 Hyal i te, *82 Mohs' scal e, 1 8
F l uori te, 1 8, *71 Mol ds, * 1 32
Fol som poi nt, * 1 30 I cel and spar, *63 Mol ybdeni te, *56
Fool ' s gol d: see Pyri te I gneous rocks, * 1 1 0 Mol ybdenum, 28, 56
Foss i l s , * 1 30- * 1 3 1 , * 1 46 I l meni te, * 58 Monazi te, *57
Fracture, *20 I ndex of refracti on, 1 5 Monocl i ni c system
Frankl i ni te, *46 I nj ecti on gnei ss, * 1 39 crystal s , * 1 7
Ful l er
s earth, * 1 52 I nterference patterns, Moonstone, *88, 99
Fusi bi l i ty scal e, 23 * 1 5 Mori on [ MO- ri h- un] ,
I ntrusi ve rocks, 1 1 0- 1 1 5 78 - *79
I ron, *28, 40-*42, * 1 41 Moss agates, *52
Gabbro, * 1 1 0, * 1 1 3 ,
Mud cracks, * 1 25
* 1 54
Jade, *88 Muscovi te, 96- *97
Gal ena, * 1 6, *20, 30,
J adei te, * 1 3, 88 in quartz schi st, 1 36
*34, 47, 60
J asper, 80- *8 1 , *87 properti es, * 1 5, 1 9
Garnet, *85, * 1 04- * 1 05
J et, *89 Muscovi te gnei ss,
i n mi ca schi st, 1 36-
* 1 38 - 1 39
* 1 37
Kaol i n, *49
Gas, natural , * 1 41 ,
Ker ni te, *70
Natrol i te, 1 02- * 1 03
* 1 47
Kyani te, *48
Natural gas, 1 41 , 1 47
Gei ger counter, *24,
Ni ccol i te, *43
Labradori te, *98
Ni ckel , 28, *43
Gem cutt i ng, 90- 91
laccol i ths, * 1 1 5
Gems, 83-91
Lapi l l i , 1 1 9
syntheti c, *92- *93
Lapi s- l azul i [ LAP- i ss-
Obs i di an, *20, *89,
Geyseri te, *82
LAZ-you- l i e], *88
* 1 1 0, * 1 1 6
Gl auberi te, *68
Lava, *6, 1 1 6• * 1 1 9
Oi l : see Petrol eum
Gnei ss, * 1 38- * 1 39
Lead, *27, 34-35, * 1 - 1
Oi l shal e, 1 46
Gol d, 1 9, *36- *37
Lepi dol i te [ l ee- PI D- o-
Ol i goc l ase, 99
Grani te, * 1 1 0, * 1 54
l i ght ) , 97
Ol i vi ne, * 1 06
Grani ti zati on, * 1 40
Li mestone, *6, * 1 26-
Onyx [ ON- i x] , 64,
Graphi te, *62
* 1 27, * 1 55
80- *81
Grossu l ari te, * 1 04
L i moni te, *40
Ool i t i c l i mestones, * 1 26
Gummi te, 55
Lode, * 1 20
Opal , *22, *82, *86
Gypsum, *66- *67,
Lodestone, 23
Orpi ment, *60
1 29, 1 41 , 1 53
Luster, 2 1
Orthocl ase, 98- *99
properti es, 1 8, 1 9
properti es, 1 8, 1 9, 23
Magnesi te, *59
Orthorhombi c system
Magneti sm, 23, 43
crystal s , * 1 7
Hal i te [ HAL - i te) , * 1 6, Magneti te, *40, 48, 58
1 9, *68-69, 1 29 Mal achi te, *33, *88 Pahoehoe [puh - HOay-
Hammer, pl asterer' s, Manganese, 28, 52 h oay) , * 1 1 9
*4, * 1 0 Mangani te, 52- *53 Pai ntpots, 1 22 - * 1 23
Hardness, 1 8 Marbl e, 1 34- * 1 35, Peacock ore, *32
Hemati te, *35, *40, *89 * 1 55 Pear l s, 88-89
Hemi morphi te, *47 Marcasi te, *41 Pectol i te, 1 02- * 1 03
Herki mer di amonds, 76 Mercury, *39 Pegmati te, * 1 1 2
Hexagonal system Metamorphi c rocks, Pent l andi te, 4 1 , 43
cr ystal s, * 1 6 * 1 33 - * 1 39 Peri dot, * 1 06
1 59
Peri doti te, 1 1 0, * 1 1 3 Sal tpeter, *68 Tol e, 1 8, 1 9, *74
Petri fed wood, 80, Samarski te, * 57 Tant al i te, *57
* 1 3 1 Sand, * 1 53 Tel l ur i um, 37
Petro1 eum, 1 41 , Sandstone, * 1 22- * 1 23, Tetr agonal system
* 1 44- 1 46 * 1 54 crystal s, * 1 6
Phenocrysts , 1 1 2 quartz content, 76 Thor i um, 57
Ph l ogopi te, *97
Sapphi re, *84, *92- '93 Ti ger' s eye, *78
Phosphorescence, 22 Sord, 80-81 , '87 Ti n, *45
Phyl l i te, 1 36- * 1 37 Sardonyx, 80- ' 81 Ti tani um, 28, 58
Pi t chbl ende, ' 54 Sat i n- s par, 64 Topaz, 1 9, 23, '85
Pl agi ocl ase fel dspars, Scheel i te, *22, * 56 synt het i c, * 93
'98- * 99 Schi sts, 1 36, ' 1 37 Tourmal i ne, *23, *93,
Pl aster of Pari s, 66
Schi stosi ty, 1 36 *95
Porphyri es, 1 1 2- 1 1 3 Scori a, * 1 1 0, 1 1 7 Traprock, * 1 54
Potassi um, test, *29 Scratch test, * 1 8 Traverti ne, *64
Prehni te, 1 02- ' 1 03 Sedi mentary rocks, Tremol i te, 1 9, ' 1 00
Pr i mary ores, 1 20 ' 1 2 1 - ' 1 29 Tr i c l i ni c system
Ps i l omel one, 52 - * 53 Septari an concreti on, crystal s, * 1 7
Pumi ce, * 1 1 0, * 1 1 6 ' 1 25 Tr i pol i te, *82
z Pyri te, 36, �41 , 60
Serpent i ne, 1 9, * 1 07 Tube tests, *30
Pyrol us i te, *52- * 53 associ ati ons, 51 , 75 Tufa, 64, ' 1 27
Pyrope, * 1 04 Shol es, ' 1 24, ' 1 46 Tungsten, 22, 56
Pyroxene, * 1 5, * 1 01 S h e l l l i mestones, * 1 26 Tur quoi se, '89
0 Pyr r hoti te, *23, *41 Si deri te, 1 9, *41 Twi nned crysta l s, *63,

Si l i ca, *76, 82 * 66, * 71 , * 1 08

Quartz, * 76· *79 Si l i cates, 95
as soci at i ons, 33, 36 Si l l s, * 1 1 4
U l travi ol et l i ght , 22, 77
crystal l i ne, * 1 6, Si l ver, *38
Unconformi t i es, * 1 45
*76- * 79
Skutterudi te, *44
Ur ani ni te, 1 9,
cry ptocrysta I I i ne, Sl ate, 1 34- " 1 35, ' 1 55

*80- * 8 1 Smi t hsoni te, *47
Ur ani um, 22, "28 , 54-55
gems, *86- *87 Soapstone, 7 4
Ur anophane, *55
Uvarovi te, * 1 05
noncrystal l i ne, *82 Sodi um, t est, 129
physi ca l properti es, Soi l , * 1 48- ' 1 49
1 8, 1 9, 23 Speci fc gravi t y, * 1 9
Vanadi n i te, * 56
wi t h dendri tes, * 52 Spessarti te, * 1 05
Vanadi um, 28, 55-56
Quartzi tes, 1 34- 1 35 Sphal eri te, ' 46
Varves, 1 24, 1 50
Spi nel , 59, '85, '93
Verd ant i que, * 1 07
Rai ndrop i mpr i nts,
Spodumene, * 1 3, *85
Vermi cu l i te, *96
* 1 25
Staur ol i te, * 1 7, 1 9,
Vol cani c bombs, * 1 1 9
Rea l gar, * 60
' 1 08
Vol cani c gl as·s, *89
Refracti on, i ndex pf, 1 5
Steot i te, * 7 4
Vol canoes, * 1 1 8
Repl acement, *35, * 1 3 1
Ster l i ng si l ver, 38
Rhodochrosi te, 1 9,
Sti bni te, 23, '60 Wi l l emi te, '22, *46,
52- * 53, *89
Sti l bi te, 1 9, 1 02- * 1 03
Rhodoni te, 52- •53, *89 Streak, 21
Wol frami te, * 56
Rhyol i te, * 1 1 6
Stronti um, test, *29
Wood, pet ri fed, * 1 3 1
Ri ppl e marks, 1 22- * 1 23
Subl i mate, 26
Rock crystal , * 86
Sul fur, * 1 7, *61 , 1 41
Zeol i tes, 1 02- * 1 03
Ruby, '84, *92
properti es, 1 9, 23
Zi nc, 26- 27, 46-47
Rut i l e, * 1 6, 1 9, * 58, *78
Zi ncbl ende, * 46
tube test, *30
Zi nci te, 1 9, * 46, 47
Sal t : see Hal i te
Syen i te, * 1 1 0, * 1 1 2
Zi rcon, * 1 6, 1 9, *85,
So I t domes, * 1 45
Syntheti c gems,
1 60
*92- *93
H E R B E RT S . Z I M , P h . D. , S c . D. , i n i t i at ed t h e
Gol den Gui de Ser i es and was both aut hor and ed­
i t or for many year s. Aut hor of some ni nety books
and edi t or of about as many, he i s now Adj unct
Pr ofessor at t he Un i ver si ty of Mi ami and Educa­
t i onal Consu l t ant to t he Amer i can Fr i ends Ser vi ce
Commi ttee and other or gan i zati ons. He wor ks on
edu cati on, popul at i on and envi ronment al pr obl ems.
PAUL R. SHAFFER, Ph. D. , former l y Professor of
Geol ogy at the Uni versi ty of I l l i noi s, has wr i tten
many geol ogi cal papers for sci enti fi c j ournal s. Hi"s
academi c and i ndustri al work takes hi m i nto most
regi ons of t he Uni ted States, studyi ng and col l ect i ng.
RAYMOND PERLMAN i s a Professor of Art at the
Uni versi ty of I l l i noi s. He hol ds degrees i n fi ne arts
from that uni versi ty, and i s a Master of Profes­
si onal Arts from the Art Center School i n Los
Angel es. He has desi gned and i l l ustrated many
books on sci ence.

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