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April 2002
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AMERICAN FEDERATION OF MINERALOGICAL SOCIETIES         Volume 55, Number 5
SERVING SEVEN REGIONAL FEDERATIONS                                               April, 2002

IN THIS ISSUE

bulletImportant Notice - Effective Immediately
bulletAFMS Scholarship Foundation Announcement
bulletPresident's Message
bulletIt’s A BIG Stone !
bulletGreetings!
bulletMeet The New Team Members
bulletHave You Sent Them In Yet?
bulletLoud & Clear
bulletPublic Relations
bulletInternational Relations
bullet“More than 101 Ideas and Tips. . ” Part 2
bulletMeriwether Lewis’ Near Fatal Rockhound Experience
bulletPort Townsend Beckons
bulletCrackle or Click?
bulletAFMS Club Rockhound of the Year

Important Notice - Effective Immediately

All correspondence to the AFMS Central Office or Secretary should be sent to:

Lewis Elrod
Central Office Administrator
2706 Lascassas Pike
Murfreesboro, TN 37130-1540

                       

Anne Cook
AFMS Secretary
684 Quilliams Rd
Cleveland Heights, OH 44121

These changes have occurred due to the resignation of Dan McLennan. Please update your records to reflect these changes.

AFMS Scholarship Foundation Announcement

from the Foundation Officers

March 1, 2002

The AFMS Scholarship Foundation, has discovered an apparent significant shortage in the Foundations funds.

In order to establish irrefutable evidence of the financial status of the fund, an outside CPA will be engaged to review the past records of the organization and confirm the findings of an internal audit conducted by the audit committee.

This action is considered necessary to bring current the foundations records to the date of November 1, 2001, the beginning of the current fiscal year. This will establish a bench mark of responsibility for the new incoming officers, and if the shortage is confirmed, to fix responsibility of the apparent shortage. This confirmation of the current status would also provide additional options for future action by the Board of Directors including any necessary By-law revisions which are currently under consideration by a committee.

This committee of current and past AFMS Officers and Foundation Officers and Directors met in Tucson, Arizona in February to examine the internal audit and to provide guidance to the Foundation’s current Officers and Directors as they proceed, The Officers and Directors of the AFMS Scholarship Foundation wish to assure the Regional Federations and their members that a complete report on the findings will be presented as soon possible.

In the meantime be assured that remedial actions are being taken to keep the Foundation and its goals and aspirations ongoing and viable and to protect the Foundations’ assets.

Members having any questions or concerns should contact one of the Officers of the Foundation

AFMS Scholarship Foundation

Jon Spunaugle, President
Steve Weinberger, Vice President & AFMS President
Arlene Burkhalter, Treasurer
Ruth Bailey, Secretary

President's Message

from Steve Weinberger, AFMS President

In this issue you will see a very disconcerting letter from Jon Spunaugle, president of the Scholarship Foundation. The letter is self-explanatory, but certainly the investigation is not yet complete. Jon will keep us informed with updates concerning the progress of the findings along with the actions taken to insure that the Foundation continues to do its excellent work.

We will continue to grant our usual scholarships for the upcoming year; however, as you can see, it is very important for individuals and clubs to continue to support the program by sending donations and by purchasing tickets for the raffle of the “Dare Devil” stone. With our income from interest on bank and investment holdings down, it becomes vital that we continue to make contributions so the principal can continue growing, thus generating more spendable funds for scholarships in coming years.

You will also note that there have been some changes in the AFMS administration. Dan McLennan, our long time Central Office Administrator and Secretary has resigned. The AFMS Board of Directors has elected Anne Cook as our new Secretary and I have appointed Lewis Elrod as Central Office Administrator. Both come to their new positions highly recommended and with a wealth of experience. I know that you join me in welcoming them.

On a lighter note, this now begins the season for most club shows and field trips. Many people have their first experience with the hobby attending a club show. Why not make that experience a fantastic one? Club show are different from commercial ones in that they can show the public how to get involved in collecting, cutting or designing jewelry. Many clubs have demonstration tables where visitors can have hands-on experience with various facets of the hobby. Children love activities in which they can participate. These can be worksheets based on things to see and do at the show. Successful completion of these papers can earn a reward. Children also like to create projects which are geared to their age and abilities. Remember that many of the most knowledgeable adults got their initial interest while very young.

General interest talks with pictures or demonstrations are a great way to instill curiosity, perhaps even enough to entice the visitor to come to the next club meeting. Some clubs make sure that they have a super presentation at the meeting following their show, just to point out that learning and fun do not have to be mutually exclusive.

A club show does not have to be large to be great. I’ve attended many smaller shows which had a nice variety of dealers and where members not only demonstrated all kinds of activities, but went out of their way to make the visitor feel welcome. This warm feeling of inclusion goes a long way toward overcoming the initial feeling of strangeness visitors may experience when they first see someone huddled over a faceting machine, peering through a microscope at tiny rocks, or appearing to wave a burning torch.

From all over the country, I hear that club membership is declining. I will agree that clubs do not need more people just to fill out their ranks; but who knows, maybe the next people who become interested and join will become the next officers, committee chairs, or valuable contributing members?

It’s A BIG Stone !

from Jon Spunaugle, AFMS Scholarship Foundation

Weighing almost 6,000 carats, the “Dare Devil” really is a big faceted stone. When you hold it in the light and turn it ever so slightly, it flashes a brilliant variety of colors - salmon, lilac, yellow, red...

Cut by the Dare Devil Faceters, members of the Intermountain Faceters Guild, the stone has been donated to the Scholarship Foundation and we are offering you a chance to own it. It’s a salmon colored cubic zirconia and it really is an impressive item. It’s been valued at several thousand dollars.

By purchasing a ticket, or several tickets, you might just be the lucky person to take the Dare Devil home with you. Tickets are $5 each or 5 for $20. They may be obtained at one of the upcoming Regional Federation shows (Rocky Mountain, Eastern, California or Northwest/AFMS) or by sending your check, payable to “AFMS Scholarship Foundation” to:

Jon Spunaugle
1000 SE 144th Ct
Vancouver, WA 98868-70333.

Please include a stamped, self-addressed envelope with your ticket order along with your name, address and phone number, so that the receipts may be returned to you. The drawing to determine the lucky winner will be held at the NFMS/AFMS Convention in Port Townsend this July. You need not be present to win.

The AFMS Scholarship Foundation needs our support now more than ever and this is one way in which you can show that support...and perhaps own a fantastic faceted gem.

Greetings!

from Ron Carman, AFMS President-elect

A couple of months ago I mentioned that I have started planning visits to shows around my own federation and to others, if possible. Last month I thanked all the clubs that have sent me their newsletters and I keep getting more. I enjoy reading them. Many of those newsletters are already advertising shows both for their own clubs and other nearby clubs, along with federation shows. Most of you know that the shows are our best way of displaying to the public what we do in our hobby - and the activities are really varied. We see minerals, fossils, jewelry, carved stones, and a myriad of other items all at the same show!

I’m sure I don’t need to tell you how important it is to make the show as informative as possible and also as attractive as possible to keep visitors interested and coming back. Club members are encouraged to put in exhibits of their work or the items they have collected. If you don’t already do so, it is a good idea to have a program at a club meeting to show the members how to put together a display case. Whether they’re competitive or not, all displays should be as attractive and eye-catching as possible; that way they will catch and hold the interest of the viewers. Also, if the club has such a program at a meeting, I recommend doing it a few months before the show rather than just before the show. That way any interested members have time to put together a case without being rushed, and the exhibits chairman for the show will have a chance to get an idea of how many exhibits to plan for. I have always believed that part of the purpose of our clubs is to educate and inform the general public, and a group of well-planned and well-constructed displays is a great way to accomplish this purpose. As well as being attractive, a case should have accurate information in it, since many visitors to the shows are seeing some of these items for the first time. Competitive cases have points deducted for incorrect labeling, but whether a case is competitive or not, the exhibitor should be certain everything presented is correct. I have seen displays with galena labeled as “calcite” and calcite labeled as “bornite”. Such a display would not be very informative to a first-time viewer, and educational value is totally wasted this way, so please check the entire exhibit for correctness.

My intent is not to frighten off any would-be exhibitors. Quite the contrary; I want to encourage everyone to show off his or her handiwork, collections, etc. at the next club show. The exhibits are what make our club shows more than just a commercial venture. Without them, the shows would be nothing but a group of dealers hawking their wares. I don’t want to slight the dealers; they are very desirable to have and add a lot to any show. But our exhibits are one of the best ways to advertise our hobby to the public. A row of attractive display cases at a club show can be a pleasure to look at!

We could devote entire books to the subject of competitive displays; let’s wait till another issue to tackle that one. I hope to see you all at a show sometime.

Meet The New Team Members

Anne Cook
AFMS Secretary

A native of New York City, but a 50-year resident of Ohio, Anne Cook became interested in minerals shortly after she became interested in Bill Cook, whose interest in minerals led him to a Ph.D. in geology. They are founding members of both the Mineralogical Society of Cleveland and the Micromineral Society of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, and each has served as president of each club.

Anne is a past president of the Midwest Federation, and has served the AFMS as parliamentarian, uniform rules chair , and keeper of the eligibility files for uniform rules. Anne and Bill have a small mineral sales business, Virgin Valley Sales. The acorn does not fall from the tree as two or her four children have master’s degrees in geology. Beside her interest in minerals, Anne is a classical music lover who has sung in her church choir over 40 years, a math tutor in one of the Cleveland high schools, and a teacher of investment classes through the non-profit National Association of Investors Corp., whose Northeast Ohio Chapter she currently leads.

Lewis F. Elrod
Central Office Administrator

Lewis should be no stranger to any of us. He served as AFMS Regional Vice President representing the Southeast Federation, President-elect and the President of AFMS (1998-99). He currently heads the AFMS Endowment Fund and the Investment Committee and has remained active in the Past President’s Advisory Committee as well. Now retired, Lewis was employed by the State of Tennessee as a Fraud Investigator. His hobby interests include faceting and metal working, mineral collecting and “dabbling”. He and his wife Anna make their home in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, about 45 minutes from Nashville.

Have You Sent Them In Yet?

from Lewis Elrod, Central Office Administrator

Have you sent the Central Office the names and addresses of the three people in your club who should be receiving this newsletter? If you’ve not yet done so, it’s not too late.

We need to have the name of your club along with the name and address of the three (3) people in your club who should receive this newsletter each month. Usually the club president and editor are two of the three recipients. The third is up to you.

Please let us know today so that our lines of communication can remain open to you.

Send your changes to

AFMS Central Office
2706 Lascassas Pike
Murfreesboro, TN 37130-1541
or e-mail them to: <lfelrod@yahoo.com>

Loud & Clear

from George Loud, AFMS Conservation & Legislation Committee

February 28, 2002

H.R. 2974 - Paleontological Resources
                     Preservation Act

The bill is currently with the House Resources Committee. No action has been taken on the bill other than a referral to the Department of Agriculture (Forest Service) and Department of Interior (BLM) for comment. Our own ALAA bill got that far.

Correspondence from the office of Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) last fall indicated some interest within that office regarding introduction of a companion bill on the Senate side. However, as best as I can determine, no companion bill has yet been introduced into the Senate.

In the December-January issue I outlined what I regard as the objectionable aspects of the bill. My objections are (1) it perpetuates the lie that all vertebrate fossils are rare, (2) the bill imposes draconian penalties for violations, (3) it contains a false labeling provision which is so broadly worded as to make crimes out of mistakes and (4) it prohibits sales of legally collected fossils. I suggest you send your comments on the bill to:

The Honorable James V. Hansen
U.S. House of Representatives
Committee on Resources
1324 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515-6201

If your Congressman is a member of the House “Committee on Resources” a letter to your own Congressman would also be in order. If you have access to a computer log on to www.house.gov and click on “Committee Offices.” From the page for “Committee Offices” click on “Committee of Resources” which brings up another page offering several options for obtaining useful information. Firstly, to obtain a listing of the members of the Committee on Resources, click on “Go” under “Full Committee”. Another option is to click on “Bills and Amendments” which will bring you to a website with a summary statement of each bill currently before the Committee on Resources. Page up to HR 2974.

Diamond Rim Quartz Crystal Location -
                Tonto National Forest, Arizona

I have received several e-mails requesting telephone calls and letters to supervisors of the Tonto National Forest in Arizona to urge reopening of the Diamond Rim Quartz Crystal Location. Bob Jones, in his column “On the Rocks” which appeared in the April 2002 issue of “Rock and Gem” recounts that he had, in a recent article, described the herkimer-like quartz crystals from Diamond Point, near Payson, Arizona and lamented the closure to collecting of more that 4000 acres in that area.

As of this writing, I have not been able to obtain any information as to the how and why of the closing. Nor do I have any information regarding the possibility of reopening the area to collecting. Nevertheless, I believe it would be useful to write the Tonto Forest supervision to express your views on the matter. Please phone or write:

Eleanor S. Towns, J.D., Regional Forester
Federal Building
517 Albuquerque, NM 87102
(505) 842-3300

Karl Siderits
Forest Supervisor
2324 East McDowell Road
Phoenix, AZ 85006
(602) 225-5200

Public Relations

from Barbara Fenstermacher, AFMS Public Relations

Don Shurtz of The Pleasant Oaks Gem and Mineral Club of Dallas, Texas has voted to sponsor a special award at this year’s Regional Science and Engineering Fair. Here’s the story. What a wonderful way to interest kids in our hobby.

Special Award at the Dallas Regional Science and Engineering Fair

Our charter reads, in part, the club “is organized for charitable and educational purposes to promote interest in the various earth sciences...”. To this end, the Pleasant Oaks Gem and Mineral Club of Dallas has elected to sponsor a special award at this year’s The Dallas Morning News - Toyota Regional Science and Engineering Fair. The competitors at the Science and Engineering Fair are students in grades 7 through 12 from the Dallas area who have an abiding interest in scientific subjects. At this year’s Fair, our club will recognize the student the best project (considering the student’s grade level) in the earth science area. The special award will be a rock tumbler (with rocks and grinding/polishing materials) and a one-year family membership in our club. We will also award honorable mentions to deserving competitors with a one-year family membership in the club. Our club will provide volunteer judges to evaluate the projects and to determine who will be the award’s recipient. The winner will receive the award at the Science and Engineering Fair awards banquet, and we hope to have the winner show his project at one of our future meetings.

International Relations

from Jack Nelson, Chairman

Trading with other rock, mineral, gem and fossil collectors and micro-mounters in other parts of the world can be a most wonderful experience. It can let you meet and learn about new friends and their interests and can improve your collections. It can also give you the satisfaction of sharing some of your good specimens with others. Through a friend, I learned of a micromineral collector in Australia in 1999, who has turned out to be a good friend and frequent exchanger of terrific micromineral specimens. For example, he sent me a specimen of ulrichite, a beautiful, tiny acicular green mineral (Calcium copper uranium hydrate phosphate) that was found in only one known locality in the world, (Lake Boga Granite Quarry in Victoria, Australia) that is now depleted of that mineral. That was very exciting. We have been exchanging news, information and specimens since early 1999. I tell you this only to let you know that, now with E-mail so much a part of our lives, the whole international community has, in effect, become neighbors. I can now happily count a dozen friends in other countries with whom I have exchanged specimens and with whom I also frequently “talk”.

I met all of my foreign (and many of my U. S. friends through membership in a number of “mineral”, “micromounting” and “fossil” type Internet lists or discussion groups whose nearly 2,000 members include many from many foreign countries. There are many such groups to choose from). What a wonderful way to promote good relationships despite some of the difficult political barriers that exist in the world.

Below are some very good and useful web sites you can explore and next month I will give you a partial list of some of the good Internet lists or discussion groups I mentioned above.

Canadian Directory of Rock & Mineral Associations http://pangea.usask.ca/~dfs846/rmac/,

Mont St Hilaire Web Page http://www.ssc.on.ca/mandm/mshhome.html

New Zealand Mineral Group http://homepages.ihug.co.nz/~pincha/minerals.htm,

Canadian Rockhound Internet Magazine http://www.canadianrockhound.com/,

Mineralogy Club of Antwerp, Belgium (A great resource!) http://www.minerant.org/,

AltaVista Translations (Will translate many web sites in foreign languages) http://babelfish.altavista.com/translate.dyn.

Talk to you next month!

[Ed. Note: You can reach Jack at <nelsonja@erols.com>]

“More than 101 Ideas and Tips. . ” Part 2

from Bob Livingston, President EFMLS

Here are a few more ideas to try with your club.

Demonstration of drop cast silver into water, ice cubes, wet beans, wet long pine needle bundle or on salt to produce neat pendants, or even earrings in some cases. This has been very popular when done at EFMLS Wildacres Workshops. (You can use an outdoor parking lot if your meeting place will not allow the open flame of a torch for melting the silver.)

History of mining or one particular type. Alternate: speaker on Metaphysical minerals.

Junior members night — turn the tables and let the kids show their skills and present to the adults.

“Finders Keepers” — this is a great Wintertime program for areas that cannot get out into the field and collect. A field trip right at the meeting site. It makes for a nice reward to the membership after their hard work in putting on another successful show. To do this, you purchase x number of bags or pounds of Montana sapphire concentrate and divvy it up in paper cups so each person present can closely search for the gemstones. (Let an expert re pan the spent, searched gravel to recover still more that was missed.) The Syracuse, NY club has always doubled its normal attendance on snowy January or February nights with this type program. People naturally love the idea of trying to find and cart off something for nothing.

Enameling and Cloisonne (good references in current and past hobby magazines).

Person demonstrates geode splitting with special long handled chain wrench. Members enjoy the participation and can buy geodes from the demonstrator or bring their own to be halved.

Demo of new or desired product — i.e. PMC (precious metal clay) or ultrasonic cleaner large enough to do minerals. Or metal detector(s) demos by a dealer.

First Aid and safety. What to do “IF” at your meeting place or while on a remote collecting trip. It pays to “Be Prepared” as scouts are taught.

Do you have any program ideas that you wish to share? Send them to the Editor and we’ll pass them along.

Meriwether Lewis’ Near Fatal Rockhound Experience

from Brenda Hankins, AFMS Lewis & Clark Chairperson

The summer of 1804 found the Lewis and Clark Expedition traveling west against the current of the Missouri River. At present day Kansas City, in the great River bend, the Corps of Discovery turned north toward the Mandan Villages. What lay ahead came to be described as a passage through the Garden of Eden and a summer filled with incredible experiences.

Lewis saw and described the coyote which was new to science. He found an area of the River that was 70 yards wide and three miles long that was completely covered with white feathers, deposited by a flock of birds preening on a sandbar up the River. Private Joseph Fields killed the Expedition’s first buffalo, whose hump became the favored food second only to the beaver’s tail

On the Fourth of July, the men of the Expedition became the first American citizens to celebrate the nation’s birthday west of the Mississippi River. The day started with the firing of the cannon and ended with the enjoyment of a second dram of whiskey. In honor of the nation’s 18th birthday, Lewis and Clark named a creek “Independence”. Today, in present day Atchison, Kansas, you can stand in the bedroom where Amelia Earhart was born and look out the second story window into the Missouri River and almost see the National Park marker commemorating the Expedition’s 1804 Fourth of July celebration.

Another incredible experience that summer almost ended the Lewis and Clark Expedition as we know it. The Expedition came close to losing its primary namesake and its only designated rockhound. Meriwether Lewis almost met his demise in a situation that continues to haunt some modern day rockhounds.

Lewis was known to be more knowledgeable in botany than in mineralogy, but he took all his responsibilities seriously. On August 22, about 650 miles up the Missouri River, past the mouth of the Platt River, Lewis found and studied a substance that he believed to be arsenic or cobalt. According to Clark’s journal, Lewis attempted to taste and smell the specimen so that he could conclusively record what it was. Lewis was immediately overcome by the substance and was nearly poisoned. To ease his condition, Lewis took some of Rush’s Pills, often called “Thunderbolts” because of their impact on the bowels! Without a doubt, the pills were not the appropriate treatment strategy and only added to Lewis’ misery. Fortunately, however, Lewis’ survived his near fatal rockhound experience.

Reference
Ambrose, Stephen. Undaunted Courage; Meriwether Lewis, Thomas Jefferson, and the Opening of the American West. 1997. New York: Touchtone.

Port Townsend Beckons

July is a wonderful time to be in Pacific Northwest and Port Townsend may well be the best spot of them all. Temperatures at this time of year are warm, there is little rainfall the scenery terrific and wealth of activities for you to enjoy almost endless. As if that is not enough, this year the American and Northwest Federations will be holding their conventions there.

Have you made your reservations yet? If not, we urge you to do so now. A complete listing of hotels and camping areas was in the February AFMS Newsletter.

Activities for the week are plentiful. On Tuesday, the Uniform Rules Committee will hold its annual meeting. Here’s a chance for you to come and hear what changes are being planned in the rules governing our competitive displays. Listening to the deliberation of the dedicated members of the committee is an eye-opening experience. Those rules aren’t changed without thorough research and discussion all aimed at easing the process of display and judging for both exhibitors and evaluators.

The AFMS annual meeting will be held on Wednesday and there is sure to be lots of important information given as officers and committee chairs present their reports for the year and discuss the direction that the Federation needs to take in the coming year.

The show itself will be held Thursday thru Sunday at the Jackson County Fairgrounds and the Northwest Federation meeting will be held on Friday evening. On Saturday editor’s from around the country will get together for their awards.

As with any federation convention there are plenty of opportunities to eat and socialize. Friday luncheon will be an “All Officers Luncheon”. Saturday morning of course is the Editor’s Breakfast and at lunchtime, the Past Presidents Luncheon. Saturday evening is the Awards Banquet where competitive exhibitors are recognized, new officers installed and a good time had by all. You don’t have to be an “officer” or a “past president” or an “editor” to attend any of these functions. Just sign up and join in on the fun as the group gathers and gabs and eats.

So will we see you in Port Townsend? We hope so. The Port Townsend Rock Club has done an excellent job in organizing this show for YOU. The ball is now in our court to show them, by our attendance, how thankful we are.

Crackle or Click?

from Mel Albright, AFMS Safety

All rockhounds work with tools that are powered by electricity. And I’m sure we all trust their safety.

But - things do wear out. There are manufacturing errors. Shorts do occur. Things can go wrong. In today’s world of triple case tools, we all assume that the tool is safe even if something goes wrong inside. Too bad it’s not always true.

Electric tools can shock you. The shock may be small if you are not grounded or if you do not complete a circuit.

If the floor is wet, you may be grounded. If there’s a water or gas pipe around, you may be grounded. If you’re wet, you may be grounded. If you have the wrong shoes on, you may be grounded. If you’re in the swimming pool and touch an electric appliance - you’re it. All this is to say that you cannot bet your life that you are NOT grounded.

To complete a circuit means you are connected between the two power lines of your electricity supply or between the power ground and a charged line. With old tools, you may remember a tingle or worse when you held or touched a tool or electric appliance. When two wires in an electrical lead touch, there is a new circuit formed and sparks fly.

If you ignore all this and go merrily on your way, you may never have a problem. Or, tomorrow you may get a charge of electricity that knocks you down or even kills you.

There’s a great way to be sure no one is ever hurt by an electrical shock. It is a device called a ground fault interrupter. This device is built to detect when there is a sudden increase in the power going through a circuit and will break the circuit when one occurs. This means when you short something out, you’ll hear a click rather than hear a sizzle or a crackle or be hurt by an electrical short.

There are two types of GFI available. One type replaces the switch in your circuit box and protects everything on that circuit. These are best, but must be installed by an electrician. Definitely not do-it-yourself. The other is a small unit that replaces the wall socket unit you use to plug something into the wall. If you know how to change these, it can be a do-it-yourself project to install one. You may have seen one of these if you have stayed in a fairly modern motel. Every motel/hotel bathroom plug now has a GFI. You’ll see the usual sockets and a small re-set button.

Get GFI installed wherever electrical tools are used or even for thee whole house. IT CAN BE LIFE SAVING - YOURS!

WARNING - these don’t work right on the old fashioned two wire, ungrounded electric circuits in old houses. That makes a re-wiring job an old house an excellent idea since old wires short in the walls.

AFMS Club Rockhound of the Year

from Bonnie Glismann, Chair

Eastern Federation

The husband and wife team of Jim and Ginny Patzer is being honored by the American Fossil Federation as the AFMS Rockhounds (or Fossilhounds if you will!) of the year 2002. Jim was elected to membership in 1997 and Ginny followed in 1999. By 2000, they were serving as the Assistant Newsletter Editors. Then Jim was elected as Newsletter editor in 2000, while Ginny continues as the assistant. They received awards for both their writing and for the bulletin last year. Since 1997, they have shared their interest in paleontology with elementary school students, girl scouts and at the Chesapeake Blues Festival. They have also donated fossil specimens to the Calvert Marine Museum and whale vertebrae to the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of Natural History.

The Mississippi Gem and Mineral Society is very fortunate to have an outstanding member in Leon Boutwell, who has been nominated as their 2002 AFMS Rockhound of the Year. As an instructor of silversmithing, faceting and lapidary, he is extremely patient, and he monitors even the novices until they get the procedure down pat. Leon has held the position of show chairman several times and has always been a big part of the success of the shows by serving in many positions and cheerfully advising on others. He has also served on the Board of Directors and was instrumental in obtaining the space and for setting up a club workshop, which he and his wife Mary Jane continue to maintain. He welcomes each new member with enthusiasm and humor and knows how to make a person feel confident and at ease.

California Federation

Sutter Buttes Gem & Mineral Society presents Bob and Inez Berg, honored for their many contributions to the club as well as to other clubs and associations for many years. “Bob has served multiple years as our Field trip Chairman and represents us in the Co-Op Field Trip Association, always enthusiastically sharing his experiences and specimens in rough and polished form with samples for Club members and guests. He has also served as 1-3 year voting Director at Club business meetings. Inez is currently Club Historian and is working on Public Lands Access. She has served on other Club standing committees, including Hospitality, Sunshine, and Refreshments. Both work admirably to make our Club shows successful. S.B.G.& M. greatly appreciates their contributions to our club and the rockhound avocation.”

Submitted by Pete Howell, Federation Director

Capistrano Valley Rock & Mineral Club presents John Ounderkirk. “John has been a member for many years, serving as an officer and Board Member, and has been and still is the Showcase Chair. He collects fossils and minerals. He displays fossils in local schools and libraries and arranges for other members to display lapidary work also. In addition, he works with the Orange County Paleontology experts in collecting and classifying our rich county fossil beds. John is the kind of member that every club needs to make a better club and to educate the public about minerals and fossils.”

Submitted by Wilbur Wright, President

Southern California Paleontological Society presents C. R. “Bob” King. “Bob first joined the CFMS in 1970 with the formation of the Redondo Gem & Mineral Society and was elected their Federation Director. In 1972, he became Federation Director for the Southern California Paleontological Society and has held the position ever since. He was appointed to the CFMS Museum Committee in 1973, a position he still enjoys. Also, in 1973, Marion Godshaw asked him to become a Fossil Judge, and he has judged every year since. He also judged Minerals, Education, Petrified Wood, and Lapidary. In 1977, he helped investigate and remove the “Golden Bear” gold specimen from the Ferry Building in San Francisco, not a secure location, and transferred it, along with the Benitoite specimens, to the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, where they are on display in a case he designed. In 1981 he wrote a comprehensive physical layout for the CFMS Show for the Federation and for several more Shows. Bob has been presented with the CFMS Golden Bear Award and been the CFMS Scholarship Honoree. He visits many schools to make presentations and give samples of fossils and minerals to students. He has held many offices in the societies he has belonged to, including President, Vice President, Society and CFMS Director. He was Chair for the Santa Monica Red Carpet Show. He has won many ribbons for his displays and has received the AFMS and CFMS trophies for fossils and minerals. As a retired college professor, he delights in helping young and old discover the earth.”

Submitted by Ernie Oestrich, President

The Stockton Lapidary and Mineral Club presents Carl Cooper. Three-time President and dedicated Life member, Carl is currently on the Board of Directors. His contributions to our hobby and club have been a textbook example of Education Thru Sharing. It seems like almost from the beginning of time, Carl has been an icon in our club. Currently, and for the past many years, Carl has spearheaded “Earth Science Presentations” wherein he conducts enlightenments about the rocks and minerals that around us abound. These are given to any group requesting schools, boy and girl scout troops, senior citizens groups, and all receive a polished stone. Word-of-mouth praise has kept Carl happily engaged, and thus he averages about 20 talks each year. Carl also fills showcases with rocks, minerals, and lapidary arts in area libraries, banks, and other public buildings. Carl makes lapidary door prizes for our club and handles the yard maintenance. He is always available on shop nights to our members and built and maintains several pieces of lapidary equipment for the club. Show time is another opportunity for Carl, a willing hand, doing whatever is needed smoothly and efficiently. His case is always a welcome part of our show. Unassuming by nature, Carl is always there, a willing hand. His infectious enthusiasm is responsible for many new members joining and being active. Such a “Carl” in club is an asset of unimaginable value! We in the Stockton Lapidary and Mineral Club are indeed blessed in having Carl as a most sharing member!!!!

Submitted by Stan Wright

The Roseville Rock Rollers, Inc. present Milton Houston. Milt has been a member of Roseville Rock Rollers since the early 70’s when he moved to Roseville. He has held several offices, President, past President, Federation Director, and Hospitality Chairman, but perhaps his biggest contribution has been his service for 10 years as Lapidary Shop Instructor. This shop is a joint venture with the City of Roseville and the RRR Club. This involved being at the Community Center where the classes are held every Monday evening, except holidays and summers for that entire period. This brought a two- fold advantage to the club. Anyone could take the class, and many new members were recruited into the club because of this. He is involved in several other clubs, and brings his experience to us from these, as well as all the offices he has held in these clubs. He is a great representative for the rock-hounding hobby, as he never met a stranger for long, and enjoys talking about and teaching all the many related parts of the hobby, most of which he does, or has done in his years of active membership. He has not been able to participate in Field trips for several years because of repeated knee surgeries, but there are plenty of other hobby related activities that he can still do and enjoy.

Submitted by Iris Geiser, President

Shadow Mountain Gem & Mineral Society, Inc. presents Maurice “Doc” Wright. “Doc has been a member since 1951 and also a member in Palm Springs Lapidary Club and the Coachella Valley Mineral Society. He has won countless awards for his entries in competition at the Riverside County Fair and National Date Festival, in the categories of Mineral, Lapidary, and Jewelry. About four years ago, at age 93, he achieved the title of “Certified Supreme Master Gemcutter”. The CFMS displays two of his agatized palm root cabochons at the annual Convention and Show. He has served for ten years as Editor/Printer of our newsletter, Field Trip Chairman, Show Chairman, President, Vice President, and Business Manager. He was awarded a Lifetime Membership and nominated to the National Rockhound and Lapidary Hall of Fame in South Dakota. He has always been available to teach his lapidary skills and share his knowledge of gems, minerals, and jewelry making with both new rockhounds and any others who might be interested.”

Submitted by Ray Crase, President

Lassen Gem & Mineral Society presents Leah Hudson. “Mrs. Hudson has been a tireless, productive member of our Club for over 35 years. She has held all the elective offices, plus Show Chairman, Field Trip, Programs, Membership, Public Relations, and Hospitality, to name a few. At 94 years of age, she has had to curtail some of these activities. She is always eager to help or offer assistance to the Club or individuals.”

Submitted by Jackie Woodson, President and
Roberta Numeyer, Secretary

Santa Cruz Mineral and Gem Society has chosen Pat Clarke as Member of the Year. Pat has served very ably as Show Chairman, and as unofficial show advisor and implementer, for a number of years. She is a talented jewelry designer and has recently become a show dealer. Her enthusiasm and persistence inspires fellow members to sign up for all the jobs in all the time slots at the annual shows. Her take charge approach and her experience in public relations has helped avert unexpected, enormous, last-minute disasters. Pat is also our favorite metro bus driver.

Submitted by Marion Fowler Federation Director, SCM&GS

Mariposa Gem & Mineral Club presents Norbert Shea, the Club’s Number One Volunteer. If there is a project to do, he is there to help or to do it. He is a Charter Member of the Club, and since 1990 a Lifetime Member. He and wife Claire worked the raffles, the silent auction, and the cash box for every Gem Show that the Club has had. He single-handedly cleaned out our storage trailer, so it could be used for storage. He was CFMS Representative for many years, going to the Federation meetings and reporting back to the Club. He especially enjoyed the cracker barrel sessions, swapping stories with other Club representatives. He was treasurer for several years. He never wanted to be president, ‘too much trouble’. In recognition of his untiring support of the Club since it started, he was presented with a “suitable certificate” and his name placed on the plaque that is displayed in the Club’s shop. The Club rose to salute him with a rousing round of applause and congratulations.”

Submitted by Erik Braun, President

Amador Gem & Mineral Society presents Frank and Henrietta Martz. “They joined Amador Gem & Mineral Society in 1978, have each been President three times for at least five years, and host and hostess for the club most of time since joining. They make sure refreshments are at each meeting, provide decorations for special occasions, and between the two of them have been shop repair person, Field Trip Leaders, Fair Chairman, Lapidary Instructor, Co-op President, and Scholarship Chairperson. In addition, they hold the June meeting and potluck at their home each year.”

Submitted by Betty Egger

The Fresno Gem & Mineral Society presents Al Madden. Al first joined the Society in 1957. Since then he has been Federation Director at least six years, President of the Club twice, Secretary twice, Treasurer once, editor for a year and a half, and editor again this year. In addition to these tasks, he has lectured to many school classes and cub scout groups about rocks. This year will make his 6th year in charge of the group that sells and cuts geodes at our concession at the Big Fresno Fair.

Submitted by Newman Gill

Lake Elsinore Gem & Mineral Society presents Leon (Buzz) Keeton. Though He has been a Club member for only 4 years, Buzz has been a past Director of the Club. His generosity is legendary within the Club, especially to children through the Club’s school programs, and to the Club’s annual silent auction. Buzz has been battling tremendous odds concerning his health, but is still willing to help, especially with children. If attitude is everything, Buzz is a very wealthy man.

Submitted by John P. Frey, Federation Director

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Last Revised on October 17, 2011
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