Description

    PYRITE with BACULITES YOKOHAMI
    Brass Balls Claim, State Bridge, Eagle County, Colorado

    Bridging the gap between minerals and fossils is this combination piece featuring a couple of different varieties of Iron Sulfide together in a shale matrix. A number of minerals are known to deposit or crystallize from water solutions, Iron and Uranium among others. There is no Uranium to speak of in this specimen, but there is an abundance of Iron, either as Marcasite or Pyrite - the dividing line between them is somewhat fuzzy. In fact, this is clearly demonstrated by the transition from one to the other visible in the change from the smooth "Marcasite" replacement of the Baculite fossil to the irregularly crystallized "Pyrite" knob on the end of the fossil. In both cases the Iron was provided by anoxic seawater (because Baculites are marine animals related to squid) permeating low-oxygen muds on the ocean floor, where decaying organic matter (the Baculite) provided the Sulfur and the reducing conditions necessary to cause Iron Sulfides to precipitate. Once the process of precipitation is started by the presence of organic matter, then it usually chugs right along until the Iron becomes depleted. It is not immediately apparent but all of the Pyrite crystals are associated with a fossil Baculite - one can be seen deep inside the Pyrite group on the right-hand edge. The collector of this fossil chemistry demonstration is the well-known amateur paleontologist: Bill Hawes, who excavated it in the summer of 1996. The Baculite measures ~ 4.25 inches (10.8 cm) long, while the largest Pyrite group measures 3.75 inches (9.7 cm) across. There is a note that the specimen is repaired, probably where there is a small amount of missing material at the tip of the Baculite. This unusual mineral/fossil specimen is a fine and showy display piece, that comes with a custom acrylic base.
    Overall measurements: 8 x 8 inches (20 x 20 cm). Offered at no reserve.

    Provenance: Collector's Edge (CE #97-45), ex. Bill Hawes [Hoppel Catalog # D1678]


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


    Condition Report*:

    Condition report available upon request.

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    Auction Dates
    June, 2013
    2nd Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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