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General Meeting - February 10, 2014

The General Meeting of the Tucson Gem and Mineral Society was called to order by President Diane Braswell at 7:30 p.m. Everyone was welcomed to the meeting and thanked for attending.


John Callahan announced that the program for the May meeting will be a specimen auction. He is asking that specimens with a story or history be donated for the auction. Please check your collections and see if you have an interesting specimen to donate.


“The Forgotten Caves of Bisbee, Arizona” was the topic of speaker Richard (Dick) Graeme, a Bisbee native from a pioneer family that arrived in Bisbee in 1883. By six years of age, Dick was going into the mines (often alone by candlelight) and collecting minerals, some of which are still part of his 5000 plus Bisbee specimen collection. He is a U of A graduate in Geological Engineering, worked underground as a miner for 12 years and as the resident Geologist of the Copper Queen Mine. When Bisbee closed in 1975, he was transferred to Ajo, where he left geology and went into management. He is currently in charge of a $6 billion copper project in the high Andes of Peru.

There were hundreds of caves in western district of the Bisbee area with a great variety of mineral deposits. The Copper Queen was associated with a cave of very rich, almost pure malachite. More ore bodies and more caves were found, all sulfur oxidation in origin and all very large. The mined caves have now been filled or collapsed.


Refreshments were provided by Jo Anne Sam and Sandy Clover and included cake and a variety of cookies. Many thanks!


Field Trips: Kerry Towe reported that the January 25th trip to the Silverbell Mine was a good collecting site and 30 members were allowed in. March 7th will be a trip to the Mission Mine and there are 27 people on the list. The Purple Passion trip will be March 16 instead of February 22nd. There is a $20 fee with half being paid by TGMS. The owner will take the group to four mines, ending at the Purple Passion. April 25-26 will be to the Oceanview Mine for tourmaline. The collecting fee is $50 with half being paid by TGMS. May 3rd will be the Rowley with a $15 fee. June 7th Carlisle Mine Dumps in New Mexico. July (no date) will be a trip to Orange Bluff, New Mexico. Kerry is also working on a trip back to the Broken Arrow in Tonopah, Nevada for turquoise which will be in time frame of the last two weeks of June or first two weeks of July. Collecting fee is $100.

Helen Serras-Herman is in St. Joseph’s hospital following back surgery. We all wish her well and a speedy recovery.

Diane Braswell thanked Wayne Klement and his crew for getting the new cases together and the linings made and installed. Great job!

Members are encouraged to contribute to the new Case Endowment Fund.


Community Outreach: Nothing new to report.

UA Mineral Museum: A new exhibit, “The Best of Arizona Collectors,” is opening and all are encouraged to see the exhibit.

Tucson Botanical Gardens: Friday and Saturday, February 15-16, at 9:00 a.m. there will be a sale of Harrison Yocum’s rocks.


Sandy Clover, as meeting host, made the first choice. Drawing winners were Denise Nelson, Gene Kenyon, Barb Mastoff and Nanci Johnson.

The meeting was adjourned at 9:15 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Marilyn Reynolds, Recording Secretary