LAPIDARY ARTS and FACETERS DIGEST
Issue No. 184 - Monday August 11, 2003
Moderated by: Thurmond Moore III
Committed to carrying on the fine works of
Hale Sweeny and Jerry Dewbre
POST TO EITHER LINK BELOW:
VISIT OUR WEBSITE TODAY
I guess you wonder what happened to Friday's
Digest. There were two jokes sent in and NO
post. NO Post equals NO Digest. The same
thing has nearly happened today. Get those post
in now for inclusion in tomorrows digest
Index to Today's Digest
01 NEW: William Holland Rocks!
02 FS: New Micro-Torch Outfit
03 NEW: Native Copper Newsletter
Subject: William Holland Rocks!
Date: Sun, 10 Aug 2003 10:23:54 -0500
To: "LapidaryArtsDigest" <email@example.com>
From: "Carol Carter-Wientjes" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Just returned from a week at William Holland Lapidary Arts School (my
2nd time) Slabs & Cabs class. Chris Calloway was "The Cabber" instructor
and he had his hands full, 4 female students! Chris is the greatest guy
and we only let him stay in his shy shell for the 1st day. :-) If
anybody on this list has ever considered taking a cabbing class at the
school, I highly recommend going when he's instructing. Dick Helsley
(owns Gloria's Gems rock shop in Young Harris, GA) was the "The Slabber"
instructor and is a walking encylopedia of rock ID and has some great
factual trivia & stories to go with each one. A visit to his rock shop
is a visit to a virtual museum of specimens. And Dick & Gloria are just
about the nicest people you could ever meet.
As many of you probably already know, William Holland is a great place
to learn cabbing, faceting, intarsia, and the list goes on & on. At 43,
I'm just a "kid" and am trying to do my part to inspire others to help
carry on the lapidary torch and keep it burning bright. So like Thurmond
sez, "Share your love of lapidary with everyone." That's an easy one.
New Micro-Torch Outfit:
Smith unopened kit containing Micro-Torch, hoses, tip, and two
regulators for use with hardware-store type cylinders of propane and
oxygen. Cost $186 from Stuller. Sell for $120 plus shipping at cost.
(770)396-0034 or ToBob@vei.net.
Reprinted with permission from The Unconventional Lapidarist
Native Copper Newsletter
Sorry for the delay in the sending out of this newsletter. We have been busy
relocating ourselves this past month. We have moved from the hot south to the much
cooler north in Wisconsin. We are staying with Cindy's dad where we have been setting
up cutting equipment. Since he is a cutter too we are putting all of our talents
together to be as productive as we can. We are also taking advantage of the three of
us being in one spot and taking some small field trips nearby. We just went to the
Upper Peninsula of Michigan and northern Wisconsin to check out their rocks. We were
successful in finding the enormous quartz deposit at McCauslin Mountain which is said
to be 4 miles wide and 20 miles long. It is amazing to see massive quartz like that.
It is a beautiful hike as well. We also sought out and found the Kona Dolomite from
Marquette County on the Upper Peninsula. We hope to have some cabs of that online
very soon. Hope you all are having a great summer so far and have had opportunities
to seek out interesting rocks yourselves. This month we thought we would do the
newsletter on native copper, specifically Keweenaw Peninsula, since the annual
Keweenaw Week is coming up August 4-11. This is a week long event that gives you an
opportunity to check out the old mine dumps on the Keweenaw Peninsula to find native
copper and other associated minerals. During this time many of the old dumps are
turned over so that new material will be exposed. There are people on hand who can
help you locate the different minerals at the locations. Definitely a worthwhile
What is Copper?
Copper is one of the native metals which contains small amounts of arsenic, antimony,
bismuth, iron, and silver. Copper has isometric crystals; usually cubic and
dodecahedral that are often flattened, elongated, and distorted. It is also found as
sheets, plates, lumps, and dendritic. It develops in basalt of volcanic rock by the
reaction of copper-bearing solutions on the iron-oxide minerals of the basalt. The
hardness of copper is 2.5-3 on the mohs scale.
Where is it found?
Copper is found in many places in the U.S. besides the Keweenaw Peninsula such as
Arizona, New Mexico, Oregon, Alaska, and New Jersey. It is also found in Nova Scotia,
the Greek isle of Cyprus, Germany, Russia, and Australia.
Does the Keweenaw Copper have a history?
The history of the Keweenaw copper begins roughly around 5,000 years ago when
pre-historic indians excavated the copper to make tools, weapons, and ornaments out
of the "red metal". Evidence of this has been found all throughout the peninsula and
on Isle Royale. In fact, Cindy's first experience in finding copper was a tumbled
stone she found on Isle Royale as a teenager hiking the island with dad and friends.
The indians continued to mine the material for centuries and were very reluctant to
reveal locations to any newcomers such as the European explorers. From this
reluctance developed superstitions of the copper deposits. A local legend tells the
story that four natives gathering copper bearing rocks, on a Lake Superior island,
to use to heat up for boiling water to make their meals, heard loud, angry voices
accusing them of taking the playthings of their children. The indians fled the site
so horribly freightened that three died before they reached the mainland. The 4th
indian died shortly after relaying the story when he returned home. Mining of the
region reaches as far back as far back as 1734 by a frenchman. In 1842 the Treaty of
La Pointe was concluded that resulted in the Chippewa Indians surrendering the
majority of the Upper Peninsula to the U.S. which allowed this region to be settled
under the land laws of the United States. Mining got a slow start until 1850's when
there was a copper mining section in full swing on the Boston Stock Exchange. Mining
was very strong in the 1870's and 80's when other groups came to settle the region
such as the Italians, Norwegians, Swedes, Finns, Croations, Slovenians, and Poles.
Some groups preferred surface work whole others did the grunt work underground. The
largest piece of copper ever found weighed in at 527 tons. The Great Depression
dealt a major blow to the copper mining industry and it never really recovered. The
mines began to close and the residents moved away to the larger cities. All but two
mines had closed by 1986. Only a couple mines are still working today. The tailing
piles are frequently visited by rockhounds, and some of those piles are being turned
into road gravel on the peninsula.
What is Copper used for?
Copper has long been used for wire, tubing, tools, cooking utensils, decorative
items, jewelry,and numerous other items. It has also been used as a talisman for
treating arthritis by being worn as a bracelet.
Are there tips in hunting for Copper?
It does require some patience when hunting for copper. The first time we didn't find
a great deal since we were hunting mainly by visual evidence and weight. The second
time we had a metal detector with us. That improved our hunting enormously. If you do
not have a metal detector, you can find the copper by looking for several clues. One
of the main clues is the color of the specimen. Copper is often oxidized with a
green, to blue-green color. Once you see something with those colors, pick it up. If
it is copper, or containing copper, it will be heavier than it should be for its
size. There is no mistaking it when you find a piece of copper, or a rock containing
copper because it will always be much heavier than you expected. I also found it to
be helpful to keep searching in an area once I have found a piece. It seems that the
copper pieces hang out in groups. Look for unusual edges or shapes too. The really
cool pieces, the dendritic copper, could resemble ferns and other plant life. If you
do have a metal detector, collecting will be a lot easier. The tricky part is knowing
exactly which rock the metal detector sounded off on. To be sure that the rock you
think is the correct piece, move it away from the location it was found and test it
again by passing the detector over it. Small pieces can be held directly up to the
detector to verify. Make sure that you are not wearing a watch or anything else
metallic on your hands and wrists or you might set off the detector erroneously. Do
not dismiss a rock that does not look like copper if it beeps on the metal detector.
These rocks usually contain either solid copper within or strands of copper running
What should I be aware of when cutting Copper?
Copper is tricky to cut. It is a soft metal and could bind up your saw. When slabbing
copper, t is a good idea to cut one or two slabs and then cut some whetstone or
another stone to clean the blade. Make sure to always be near the saw in case it bogs
down so you can stop the saw. Cutting copper requires more of your attention but it
makes beautiful slabs, and cabs. Another thing to do is to tumble pieces of the
copper. Some of the tumble pieces, even with the matrix, make great wirewrap jewelry,
or pieces for bezel setting. If you are cutting solid copper (not in matrix) you
might try the CBN (Carbon Boron Nitride) or saw blades designed to cut metals.
How do I clean the copper?
Copper is a tricky thing to clean and have it not tarnish. I decided to give you two
different websites that have tips on how to clean the copper. It is easier that way
than for me to try to give you the information which I orginally got from them
myself. Check out http://fgms.home.att.net/copper.htm and the other site is
Unconventional Lapidarist is pleased to announce a wholesale program for those who
are in the business with a valid tax id. Please inquire to one of our email addresses
below if you would like to know more information.
Until next month,
James and Cindy
RESOURCES FOR LAPIDARIES:
PERSONALS: (General Lapidary and Faceting)
Lurking is fine, but participation is better for learning !
Post something from your experiences in gemcutting today!
TODAY'S FUNNY ~
Townsend, the developer of the laser, was once asked if he didn't have a
tremendous sense of achievement in all he had accomplished with his
invention, such as methods for precision measurements, laser disc, and
He remarked, "Not really." He said that he could easily identify with the
beaver and relayed the following story:
A beaver and a chipmunk happened upon the Hoover Dam while out strolling one
day. They were caught off-guard, completely overwhelmed with amazement and
awe at the size and magnificence of this structure.
Once the beaver recovered, he remarked, "Well, actually, I didn't build it
myself, but it's based upon an idea of mine."
REFLECTIONS AND TIDBITS:
Subject: Reflections and Tidbits
Date: Fri, 8 Aug 2003 16:55:19 -0400
From: "J Wagstaff" <email@example.com>
Senior citizens are constantly being criticized for every conceivable
deficiency of the modern world, real or imaginary. We know we take
responsibility for all we have done and do not blame others.
HOWEVER, upon reflection, we would like to point out that it was NOT the
senior citizens who took:
The melody out of music,
The pride out of appearance,
The courtesy out of driving,
The romance out of love,
The commitment out of marriage,
The responsibility out of parenthood,
The togetherness out of the family,
The learning out of education,
The service out of patriotism,
The Golden Rule from rulers,
The nativity scene out of cities,
The civility out of behavior,
The refinement out of language,
The dedication out of employment,
The prudence out of spending,
The ambition out of achievement, or,
God out of government and school.
And we certainly are NOT the ones who eliminated patience and tolerance
from personal relationships and interactions with others!!
And, we do understand the meaning of patriotism, and remember those who
have fought and died for our country.
Does anyone under the age of 50 know the lyrics to the Star Spangled
Banner? or O Canada?
Just look at the Seniors with tears in their eyes and pride in their
hearts as they stand at attention, on veterans day and our great
country's birthday .
YES, I'M A SENIOR CITIZEN!
I'm the life of the party...... even if it lasts until 8 p.m.
I'm very good at opening childproof caps... with a hammer.
I'm usually interested in going home before I get to where I am going.
I'm awake many hours before my body allows me to get up.
I'm smiling all the time because I can't hear a thing you're saying.
I'm very good at telling stories; over and over and over and over...
I'm aware that other people's grandchildren are not nearly as cute as
I'm so cared for -- long term care, eye care, private care, dental
I'm not really grouchy, I just don't like traffic, waiting, crowds,
lawyers, loud music, unruly kids, Jenny Craig and Toyota commercials,
barking dogs, politicians and a few other things I can't seem to
remember right now.
I'm sure everything I can't find is in a safe secure place, somewhere.
I'm wrinkled, saggy, lumpy, and that's just my left leg.
I'm having trouble remembering simple words like.......
I'm beginning to realize that aging is not for wimps.
I'm sure they are making adults much younger these days, and when did
they let kids become policemen?
I'm wondering, if you're only as old as you feel, how could I be alive
And, how can my kids be older than I feel sometimes?
I'm a walking storeroom of facts..... I've just lost the key to the
Yes, I'm a SENIOR CITIZEN and I think I am having the time of my life!
BRAVO!!!!!! Well Said !!!!
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LAPIDARY ARTS and FACETERS DIGEST
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Tempie Francis, Attorney at Law / Legal Advisor
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Share your love of lapidary with everyone.