Welcome Sign-In | Register
Sold for: Sign-in or Join (free & quick)
includes Buyer's Premium (BP) 


Sunshine No. 1 Adit, Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Hansonburg Dist., Socorro Co., New Mexico, USA

Very easily mistaken for Azurite at first glance, Linarite: a related Copper mineral is only rarely encountered, especially in large, discrete crystals. From the spectacular find of a lifetime, made by Brian Huntsman in December 1979. This discovery is widely acknowledged to be the most significant find of this mineral in modern times and this specimen is the Number One specimen.

Brilliant blue, enormous crystals rise from a sheltered cavity lined with contrasting druzy white Quartz crystals infused with patches of complementary green and blue copper minerals. The backside of the largest Linarite (1+ inch) appears to have been in contact with the other side of the original cavity hosting the group. Being on the obverse side, this surface has little or no impact on the aesthetics of the piece. Hidden deeper in the same cavity is a second crystal spanning the walls that is very close to the same length. The bottom and some of the sides of the piece have been trimmed using a diamond saw - a necessity when dealing with the hard, tough matrix hosting a delicate and large Linarite group.

After discovery, specimens from this find were exhibited at the 1980 Tucson Gem & Mineral Show by Artrox of El Paso, Texas. This particular specimen was cited in the Mineralogical Record in "What's New in Tucson" and was sold to Dr. Miguel Romero S. - Harvard educated Mexican industrialist, Senator and owner of the finest mineral collection ever assembled in Mexico; it bears his collection #6433. Upon his death in January of 1997 the piece passed through several hands before ending up in what became the Hoppel Collection, where it has resided until now. It is arguably the finest example of this mineral in existence.
Overall measurements: 3 x 2 x 1.75 inches (7.62 x 5.1 x 4.45 cm). Offered at no reserve.

Illustrated References:
Wilson, Wendell E., "What's New in Tucson." The Mineralogical Record. May-June 1980, Vol. 11, No. 3, p. 190
Jones, Bob. "50-Year History of the Tucson Show." The Mineralogical Record. Special Supplement, 2004. p. 77
Currier, Rock. "Linarite, Fluorite, Quartz from the Collection of Miguel Romero (1980)." [as shown below]

Provenance: Western Minerals, ex. Miguel Romero S. Collection #G433 painted on specimen. [Hoppel Catalog # D1573]

[Scale: 1 inch, with mark at 1 cm]

The consignor and Heritage Auctions will donate a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this lot in support of the newly-opened Perot Museum of Nature and Science.

Condition Report*:

Condition report available upon request.

*Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

Service and Handling Description: Requires 3rd Party Shipping (view shipping information)

Sales Tax information  |  Terms and Conditions

Bidding Guidelines and Bid Increments

Glossary of Terms

Auction Info

Auction Dates
June, 2013
2nd Sunday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 11
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 6,908

Buyer's Premium per Lot:
25% on the first $50,000 (minimum $14), plus 20% of any amount between $50,000 and $1,000,000, plus 12% of any amount over $1,000,000 per lot.

Heritage membership

sold in the last year

Join Now - It's Free

  1. Past Auction Values (prices, photos, full descriptions, etc.)
  2. Bid online
  3. Free Collector newsletter
  4. Want List with instant e-mail notifications
  5. Reduced auction commissions when you resell your

Consignments wanted

Consign to the 2016 April 30 Photographs Signature Auction - Dallas.

Learn about consigning with us

Everyone I came in contact with was courteous, helpful, professional, and best all, knew what they were talking about. Do you know how very rare that is?
Alan Bean,
Houston, TX
View More Testimonials receives more traffic than any other auction house website. To compare for yourself, visit:

Video tutorial

Getting the most out of search

Recent auctions

2015 October 14 Illustration Art Signature Auction - New York
2015 October 14 Illustration Art Signature Auction - New York
REALIZED $1,907,464

© 2015 Heritage Auctions | All Rights Reserved