(left): A tiny crystal of hematite
from the Buckwheat Dump, Franklin, NJ. This crystal was on a rock
that also had "radiating hematite", so named because the hematite forms
sheaf-like crystals having a radial appearance. I bought it from
the Franklin Museum.
The specimen was originally about the size of a large potato, because there was a great deal of matrix rock.
I broke one of my own rules. I took a hammer to the rock and reduced it to tiny pieces...
Actually, I was trying to save the desirable region and get rid of the excess matrix. Sometimes this is a good idea, sometimes not. If the specimen breaks into 100 pieces, I'd lean towards "not". Anyway, I had tried to trim the matrix off with a hammer and chisel, and [of course] the radiating hematite flew right off the rock. I found it lying three feet away (in the corner, amid other rock fragments) and figured I might as well study it with a loupe.
On the back was the crystal you see above. I suppose things turned out for the better, then. This is actually one of the better hematite micro crystals I've seen from Franklin.
(right): Another view of the same crystal with the
lighting angle changed just a little. It's difficult to take good
photos of specimens having high three-dimensional relief. To
appreciate a crystal like this, one must really be able to rotate it in
Below is yet another view of the crystal.
By the way, the matrix is a mixture of franklinite and compact, dirty gray calcite, probably intermixed with dolomite.
Site contents Copyright 2007-2010, njminerals.org