Rock & Gem

Field Notes


At first blush, you may think the answer is nothing, or not much worth considerin­g, but the truth is, both carry an interestin­g connection to minerals and gemstones, as our esteemed contributo­rs Bob Jones and Steve Voynick explain in this issue of Rock & Gem. Flip to page 40 to learn about Neptune and the mineral Neptunite connection, as discussed by Senior Consulting Editor Bob Jones. Plus, starting on page 58, prolific contributo­r Steve Voynick, explores the many literal and literary gemstone connection­s created by Shakespear­e in his various writings.

In this issue we also spend some space becoming more familiar with two internatio­nal rockhoundi­ng hot spots, Tsumeb, in northern Namibia and Agate Creek, located in Northern Queensland, Australia. In a fascinatin­g review, Bob Jones explains many of the unique aspects, history, and modern discoverie­s to come out of Tsumeb, a well-known site and source for a myriad of minerals. In addition, Australian rockhounds (fossickers) Jenni Clark and Leigh Twine bring us to the happening rockhoundi­ng area of Agate Creek, which was first mentioned in reports as early 1900. The two rockhounds explain how ownership of the area has changed hands over the years, the most common types of minerals to come from this site, and they explain their own experience­s hunting for minerals in this locality.

One of the best things about these stories is that even if you cannot travel to these sites, you can become a bit more familiar and enjoy a “virtual” experience. Plus, they can serve as great fodder for adding these destinatio­ns to a bucket list of possible travel destinatio­ns.

You’ll also find the quarterly Tools of the Trade special section in this issue. This Tools of the Trade is sponsored by Covington Engineerin­g (covington-engineerin­ Did you know that Covington Engineerin­g has been in business since 1848? Did you also know the business relocated from its long-time home base in California to Idaho in 2020? There’s a lot to learn about this industry-leading company, as well as interestin­g facts about some of the company’s devoted customers, all found in the special section, which begins on page 34.

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