Smithsonite (Rare Antique Polished slice) Wadsworth Atheneaum

Lavrion Mining District, Lavreotiki, East Attica, Attica, Greece
Small Cabinet, 8.9 x 7.2 x 3.6 cm
Start Time: 11/18/2021 6:45:00 pm (CST)
End Time: 11/27/2021 6:35:00 pm (CST)
Auction Closed
Winning Bidder: Private Bidder

Item Description

A frequent goal of many old collections was to acquire a Laurium Smithsonite, which were often stalactitic and sliced to show the banding. While most were gray or ugly, the cut and polish here highlights the rare blue color. The banding in this large small cabinet piece, where present, is very attractive, and the individual stalactites within the specimen clearly show the radial growth of the Smithsonites. Having both the banding and the radial growth present is a bonus, above and beyond the fact that the blue color is rare in and of itself. Admittedly not as striking as a Kelly or Choix specimen, it is far more uncommon and has a beauty all its own. This is a classic, old-time rarity from the heyday of the fabled Lavrion District Mines, timewise around 1900 or earlier, and only found anymore coming out of old collections. Heavy, 595 grams! Previously in the Miller collection from the 1800’s, after which it went to James B. Cone and the Wadsworth Atheneaum, and then to the Loomis Chaffee School (these labels are from that particular collection). From the collection of East Coast collector, George Elling, specializing in historic minerals of the East Coast and minerals from the development of old European mineralogy.