|Following is a collection of mineral specimens
that can be found in Newfoundland and Labrador, but are not of economic
importance. These were photographed as a project of the Mining Week
Committee. They depict the quality of collectible mineral specimens
available in Newfoundland. All photographs by James Butler.
This mineral, also known as analcime, usually occurs as trapezohedral
crystals and is usually white or colourless. It occurs in veins or
cavities and is generally associated with alkali-rich basic igneous
The specimen shown above was collected by Peter Elias from the Baker
Cove- New Harbour area of Placentia Bay. It is part of the Papezik
Collection (svp02489) at Memorial University of Newfoundland.
Beryl is a beryllium aluminum silicate, usually found in association
with granite pegmatites. It is the only commercial source of beryllium.
The gemstone quality of beryl is emerald. It is mined from granite
pegmatites in the USA, Brazil, India and Australia.
The crystal in the photograph was collected from a road cut north of
Indian Bay, NF. It is the property of W. Lawson Dickson, a geologist
with the Geological Survey.
Cummingtonite is an iron-magnesium silicate that usually occurs in
aggregates of fibrous crystals, often radiating. It occurs in
calcium-poor, iron-rich metamorphic rocks of medium grade. It is often
associated with ore deposits.
This specimen of cummingtonite was found in association with the iron
deposits of Wabush, Labrador. It was collected by Heather Harnum in
1980 and is part of the Papezik Collection at Memorial University of
Goethite is a hydrated iron oxide (FeO(OH)) that is generally associated
with other iron mineralization. It is a secondary source for iron.
Goethite may have a reputation as a dull and "dirty" mineral but a
number of specimens show radiating crystal structure and make a fine
addition to your collection.
The specimen in the photograph was
collected from the iron ore mines of the Iron Ore Company of Canada,
Labrador City. This sample is owned by Jamie Meyer.
Kyanite is an aluminum silicate (Al2SiO5) that has a characteristically
patchy blue colour; it may also be green, white or grey. It is usually
found in its crystalline form. It occurs in aluminum-rich rocks and
occurs in schists, gneisses, quartz veins and pegmatites. It is
important in the manufacture of refractories.
Kyanite is found on the west coast of Newfoundland, in the Port aux
The specimen shown is the property of A. Howse,
Industrial Minerals Geologist with the Geological Survey.
Lazulite is an azure-blue to violet-blue phosphate mineral
(Mg,Fe+3)Al2(PO4)2(OH)2 that is isomorphous with scorzalite and occurs
in small masses or as crystals. Not to be confused with lazurite,
which is a silicate mineral.
Lazulite is found in outcrop on the road to Monkstown, Burin Peninsula
of Newfoundland, about 10 kilometres from the intersection of the
Monkstown road and the Burin Peninsula highway.
shown is the property of Sean O'Brien, Project Geologist with the
Also known as Fool's Gold, pyrite (FeS2) is a brass-yellow
metallic that has a cubic structure and commonly striated surfaces. It
is sometimes mistaken for gold.
Pyrite is by far the most common sulphide mineral. It occurs as cubes,
massive or, more rarely as concretions. Nodules, such as these, can be
found on the Port au Port Peninsula.
The specimen shown is the
property of Loretta Crisby-Whittle, Geologist with the Geological
Quartz is stable over practically the whole range of geological
conditions, and because silica (SiO2) is the most abundant oxide in the
Earth's crust, it is a very common mineral. Its uses are extremely
varied, ranging from the construction industry (as building stone and
aggregate) to use in computer circuitry; from use as a flux in the
metallurgical industry to the manufacture of glass. It is also widely
used as an ornamental and semi-precious stone.
In Newfoundland quartz, in the form of quartzite, was quarried for a
number of years in the Argentia area for use as a flux in the
processing of phosphorus ore at Long Harbour. Several high-grade
deposits of silica have been located on the island and at least one
quality deposit near Labrador City. Work is continuing on bringing some
of these deposits into production.
The quartz crystal shown in
the photograph is an extremely well preserved specimen. It is the
property of Dan Bragg.
Sulphur (S) in its native or elemental form. Sulphur is used in
fertilizer and chemicals.
Native sulphur in silicified felsic
volcanic rocks that are 490 million years old. It is rare for sulphur
to be preserved in its elemental form in such old rocks.
The sample in the photograph is from the Red Indian Lake area of central
Newfoundland. It is the property of David Evans, a geologist with the
Amphibole group minerals of the tremolite-actinolite series, are
calcium (iron, magnesium) silicate that usually occurs in aggregates of
long prismatic crystals, common in low- to medium-grade metamorphic
Tremolite is generally white, becoming green with increased iron
content, and characteristic of metamorphosed dolomitic limestones.
This sample is a pale green and believed to be from the Ramah
Bay area of Labrador. It is from the Newfoundland Museum collection.