Zapot Pegmatite, Gillis Range, Fitting District, Mineral Co., Nevada, USA
Nevada has the honor of hosting one of the more exotic pegmatites on the planet: the Zapot "Mine." Someone wanted to hide the source of these blue green gems and, therefore, reversed "Topaz" to create "Zapot" and turned the result into the name for their mining claim. For lack of any better names, Zapot stuck, and this is how we refer to the locality today. So far, 40 minerals are alleged to come from the site, and 33 of them have been validated, one of them: Simmonsite, was first reported from this remote location. The most significant of Zapot minerals are the fairly distinctive Topaz crystals, of which this is one of the top five ever found. It was purchased directly from the miner's estate. The main Topaz measures a little over 6 inches (16 cm) edge-to-edge, and it is accompanied by four subsidiary crystals, all rising from a off-white matrix of indeterminate composition that has a weak fluorescence. The main crystal shows a subtle gradation in color from a light, pure blue, to sea blue-green on the opposite side. Exposure of the specimen to SW-UV provokes an interesting response: irregular areas of golden yellow fluorescence appear as patches and cloudy zones in the crystals. Topaz, normally, is not fluorescent, so it is likely that the golden glow is due to included Simmonsite, for which Zapot is the Type Locality. Tectonic movements during crystal growth caused a fracture offset in the big crystal, which is best visible in reflected light. This offset was incorporated into the growing crystal, producing a complex mix of growth features. The luster is glassy and there are some areas "clean" enough to facet gems from. Since the big find of the late 1990s the deposit has failed to produce any more material of this caliber and, based on a visual assessment, isn't likely to do so. This is an impressive specimen from one of the more significant gem finds in North America.
Overall Measurements: 7.9 x 6.9 x 3.9 inches (20.0 x 17.5 x 10.0 cm)
Offered at no reserve.
Provenance: Ex. Dr. Raul & Helen Madrid Collection, ex. Harvey Gordon Minerals
Estimate: $50,000 - $70,000.
Condition report available upon request.
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