This is the Web version of the current issue of the Mountain Mineral Monthly, S.A.M.S. newsletter. The newsletter may also be viewed or downloaded as a
pdf. The version sent to members, either by post or e-mail includes complete field trip details. For selected articles which have been published in past issues, see Geolore.

Obicular gabbro diorite...obicular gabbro nobody thought I'D find any.

Newsletter of the Southern Appalachian Mineral Society, Inc.


Volume 87 October 2018 Number 10

S.A.M.S. Monthly Meeting
Monday, October 1, 2018 7:00 PM
Tuton Hall Community Center
Deerfield Retirement Community
Asheville, North Carolina


Lesser Known Geologic Sites of the West
Helen Johnson

SAMS member Helen Johnson will talk about and show photos of lesser known geologic sites she visited on a trip out West this summer.

October Birthdays

Barry Schieb Oct 13
Larry Murray Oct 17
Lee McDaniel Oct 19
Tim Barton Oct 21
John F. Merz Oct 28

Hey Day
Saturday, October 6, 2018

We have been invited to another Hey Day on October 6th by the WNC Nature Center. The event runs from 10:00am until 4:00pm. Plan to arrive around 9:00am to help set up. Please arrive on Level B to register at the Volunteer Table. You can then enter through the new Main Entrance at the barn. We will have a sign up sheet at the Oct. 1st meeting for volunteers or contact Wayne Steinmetz:

Minutes for September 9, 2018

The Southern Appalachian Mineral Society
held its Annual Picnic meeting at Lake Julian Park on September 9, 2018. The meeting was called to order at 3:30 PM by President Wayne Steinmetz. 17 members and 4 guests were in attendance.

The meeting was preceded by food brought by members and the club.
The Silent Auction was set up and opened for bids.

Hey Day will be Oct. 6. More info at the next meeting.
Ballots were available, and some were mailed in.
15 ballots were submitted and counted.
All the candidates were unanimously elected.

President: Wayne Steinmetz
Vice President (programs): Jessica Fink
Vice President (Field Trips): Tim Barton
Secretary: Kathleen Munroe
Treasurer: Rhonda Ashley

Board of Directors:
Bob Seymour
Andy Worley
Donald Hathaway
Seth Woodall

Business Meeting ended at 3:45 PM
The Silent Auction was closed and a total of $190.00 and $1.00 donation was raised for the club.

Respectfully submitted.
Kathleen Munroe, Secretary

Newsletter Deadline
The deadline for the November 2018 issue of the Mountain Mineral Monthly is:
October 17, 2018

Ann E. Enderle
Jul 20,1930  - Aug 19,2018 
Having joined S.A.M.S. around 1974, Ann truly qualified as a ‘long-time’ member of the Club.  Her services were often visible at meetings and field trips and sometimes not visible.  This was especially true when she assisted her husband during the times he held various offices in the Club.  Younger members may have difficulty understanding what it was like to type and prepare a monthly newsletter before personal computers were available.  In recent years, Ann was on the Board of Directors.
Although not an enthusiastic rock collector, Ann would accompany Joe on almost every field trip he took without complaining.  Her interest was in the people on the trip and the opportunity to get to know them better than from brief discussions after monthly meetings.  That somewhat summarizes her entire approach to the Club, a willingness to serve when asked and a desire to ‘socialize’ always.  We will greatly miss her.


The Ultra-Pure, Super-Secret Sand That Makes Your Phone Possible


October 19 – 21, 2018; Knoxville, TN. 28th Annual Gem and Mineral Show, Rothchild Conference Center, 8807 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37923 Friday and Saturday 0900 to 1800; Sunday 1000 to 1700. Admission: Adults, $6 per day or show pass $10; children under 12 FREE Further information contact: Travis Paris, or Teresa Polly,


Dixie Mineral Council Field Trip
The Southeast Federation of Mineralogical Societies, Inc.

An Official Field Trip of the Montgomery Gem & Mineral Society (Montgomery, AL) (HOST)
An Official Field Trip of the Southern Appalachian Mineral Society
Saturday, October 20, 2018
Hogg Mine
Troup County, GA
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Fee Site

TRIP: The Hogg Mine started out as the Oxford Mine in 1942 to mine beryl to produce beryllium. Commercial operations shut down in 1960. The site has been opened off and on since then for specimen mining and is currently managed by Chris Painter. The site is a surface mine pit approximately 650 feet long with an east – west orientation.

COLLECTING: The parking area is at the east end of the pit. As you enter the pit from the parking area there is a trench approximately 150 feet long and to your right. Large green Aquamarine beryl and pockets of green Aquamarine beryl have been found there.  As you enter the main pit area, there is a tailing or spoil pile to your left that came out of the pit in front of you. There have been several large nice gemmy Aquamarine beryl specimens from this area. The main pit in front of you has a plethora of treasures, Rose Quartz, Smoky Quartz, banded Quartz, Beryl in matrix with the quartz, Tourmaline in matrix with the quartz, etc. The last area of note is at the western end at the back of the pit. There has been a new smaller pit dug in the last year and some very nice Blue Aquamarine Beryl has been found. The new pit was dug because an old drilling report indicated that Amethyst was found. There are pieces of Amethyst coming from the new pit.

FACILITIES: There is an outhouse available on site. There is plenty of parking. The mine also cooks hamburgers and hot dogs and has drinks. Lunch plate is $8.00

FEE: 17 years old and up is $35 per person, 16 years old and younger dig for free.

TOOLS: Bring all the tools you have: pick, shovel, screen, rock hammer, hand sledge, rock chisel, bucket, hand cart, etc. The Hogg does sale some tools in limited quantities. It would be a good idea to bring an extra change of clothes. The pit can be muddy and wet.

For Members Only

CONTACT: Jeff Edwards: 334-296-5034

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Calcite is a carbonate mineral and the most stable polymorph of calcium carbonate (CaCO3). The Mohs scale of mineral hardness, based on scratch hardness comparison, defines value 3 as "calcite".
Other polymorphs of calcium carbonate are the minerals aragonite and vaterite. Aragonite will change to calcite over timescales of days or less at temperatures exceeding 300°C and vaterite is even less stable.

Calcite is derived from the German Calcit, a term coined in the 19th century from the Latin word for lime, calx (genitive calcis) with the suffix -ite used to name minerals. It is thus etymologically related to chalk.
When applied by archaeologists and stone trade professionals, the term alabaster is used not just as in geology and mineralogy, where it is reserved for a variety of gypsum; but also for a similar-looking, translucent variety of fine-grained banded deposit of calcite.

Over 800 forms of calcite crystals have been identified. Most common are scalenohedra, with faces in the hexagonal {2 1 1} directions (morphological unit cell) or {2 1 4} directions (structural unit cell); and rhombohedral, with faces in the {1 0 1} or {1 0 4} directions (the most common cleavage plane). Habits include acute to obtuse rhombohedra, tabular forms, prisms, or various scalenohedra. Calcite exhibits several twinning types adding to the variety of observed forms. It may occur as fibrous, granular, lamellar, or compact. A fibrous, efflorescent form is known as lublinite. Cleavage is usually in three directions parallel to the rhombohedron form. Its fracture is conchoidal, but difficult to obtain.
Scalenohedral faces are chiral and come in pairs with mirror-image symmetry; their growth can be influenced by interaction with chiral biomolecules such as L- and D-amino acids. Rhombohedral faces are achiral.

It has a defining Mohs hardness of 3, a specific gravity of 2.71, and its luster is vitreous in crystallized varieties. Color is white or none, though shades of gray, red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet, brown, or even black can occur when the mineral is charged with impurities.

Calcite is transparent to opaque and may occasionally show phosphorescence or fluorescence. A transparent variety called Iceland spar is used for optical purposes. Acute scalenohedral crystals are sometimes referred to as "dogtooth spar" while the rhombohedral form is sometimes referred to as "nailhead spar".
Single calcite crystals display an optical property called birefringence (double refraction). This strong birefringence causes objects viewed through a clear piece of calcite to appear doubled. The birefringent effect (using calcite) was first described by the Danish scientist Rasmus Bartholin in 1669. At a wavelength of ~590 nm calcite has ordinary and extraordinary refractive indices of 1.658 and 1.486, respectively. Between 190 and 1700 nm, the ordinary refractive index varies roughly between 1.9 and 1.5, while the extraordinary refractive index varies between 1.6 and 1.4.

Calcite, like most carbonates, will dissolve with most forms of acid. Calcite can be either dissolved by groundwater or precipitated by groundwater, depending on several factors including the water temperature, pH, and dissolved ion concentrations. Although calcite is fairly insoluble in cold water, acidity can cause dissolution of calcite and release of carbon dioxide gas. Ambient carbon dioxide, due to its acidity, has a slight solubilizing effect on calcite. Calcite exhibits an unusual characteristic called retrograde solubility in which it becomes less soluble in water as the temperature increases. When conditions are right for precipitation, calcite forms mineral coatings that cement the existing rock grains together or it can fill fractures. When conditions are right for dissolution, the removal of calcite can dramatically increase the porosity and permeability of the rock, and if it continues for a long period of time may result in the formation of caves. On a landscape scale, continued dissolution of calcium carbonate-rich rocks can lead to the expansion and eventual collapse of cave systems, resulting in various forms of karst topography.

Ancient Egyptians carved many items out of calcite, relating it to their goddess Bast, whose name contributed to the term alabaster because of the close association. Many other cultures have used the material for similar carved objects and applications.
High-grade optical calcite was used in World War II for gun sights, specifically in bomb sights and anti-aircraft weaponry. Also, experiments have been conducted to use calcite for a cloak of invisibility.

The Newsletter of the Southern Appalachian Mineral Society, Inc. is published monthly except in January. Articles and information can be mailed to: The Southern Appalachian Mineral Society, Inc., Post Office Box 15461, Asheville, NC 28813 or e-mailed to:
Disclaimer: Articles are published as received, without technical reviews or edits.
Copyright 2017 by the Southern Appalachian Mineral Society, Inc., except for items that are specifically copyrighted by their authors. Other societies may use material published in the Mountain Mineral Monthly, provided that proper credit is given and the meaning of the material is not altered.

President: Wayne Steinmetz .... 505-7973
1st V.P.: Wayne Steinmetz .... 505-7973
2nd V.P.: Tim Barton ............ 885-8248
Secretary: Kathy Munroe ..... 676-7605
Rhonda Ashley ...................... 749-1655
Newsletter & Website Editor :
George Schissler .................... 298-2951
920 Long Branch Rd., Swannanoa, NC 28778,

Ex-Officio: Rudolph Olson III

Ann Enderle ............. 670-1996
Joseph Enderle .......... 670-1996
Donald Hathaway ...... 254-8942
Seth Woodall ............. 582-6719

Illustration with text from LIVING FOSSILS by Anne L. Parker. Used by permission of Dr. James P. Parker.

Malachite image Copyright