Agate

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An offering of the rare Arizona Antique Pink agates from the collection of Grant Curtis will open Sunday, May 20th, at noon, EST. The sale will take place at The Agate Trader.

This is the second of a series of 3 offerings of rare banded agates from Arizona. The names and locations are:

Night Sky bed                       Mulligan peak near Clifton, Arizona
Arizona Antique Pink         Round Mountain, Arizona, near Lordsburg, New Mexico.
Chimney Bed                        Near Fourth of July Butte, Buckeye, Arizona

Grant Curtis’ father was a mining engineer at Phelps Dodge and he liked to collect agates with his son starting when Grant was only seventeen. Now at 70 Grant still actively prospects, mines, cuts and polishes his discoveries. He shares his vast knowledge of Arizona agates as well as many others locations in the US and Mexico through his web store, The Agate Collectors Dream.

Have a great summer and add some fine agates to your collection when you can. I’ll be busy up in Oregon visiting the Prineville and Madras shows and selling at the Summerfest at the Rice Museum as well as the Portland Regional Show.

All the best,
Thom

 

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Sunday, the 29th of April an agate offering will open at noon, EST, of the rare Night Sky agates from Mulligan Peak near Clifton, Arizona.

                                                   at:  The Agate Shop

To those familiar with Mulligan Peak agates (also known as Clifton agates) these large purple beauties may come as a surprise. The location was first described in a copy of The Lapidary Journal that came out about fifty years ago by Bessie Simpson and then the locations was lost. The article caught the eye of Grant Curtis who had begun collection on Mulligan Peak when he was 17. Her article gave two clues, that it was near a steep rock face and that there was a camp littered with rusting tin cans there. Grant was on the lookout for these two signs but there are many places up there that meet these conditions and the area is vast. Eventually he found it and at the time I was a regular visitor to his house. Even though it was not a large deposit the remarkable coincidence of all those events led to my obtaining these eleven specimens.

I hope you will be able to join the event,
Thom

Chinese ‘Fighting Blood’ Agates this Sunday! Begins noon, Eastern Standard Time, April 22

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Sunday can be a quiet day 228222862291229522962304but I’ll do my best to make this one exciting.

Come to theagatetrader.com to visit my entertaining blog and branch to any of my six ETSY stores. Or go directly to The Agate Shop and the first thing you will see are 25 select Chinese agates.

The famous mines in Hebei, China, were permanently closed over two years ago. Top specimens like these are becoming rare, this is a special moment in agate history. They were discovered only about eight years ago 150 km northwest of Beijing.

An Easter day thunderegg hunt

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Not every holiday is as enjoyable for adults as it is for the kids so for this Easter I’ve prepared a thunderegg hunt for Easter Day which should provide some adult fun for thunderegg collectors. I added 13 fine Lava Caps to The Thunderegg Shop and I hope you enjoy them.

Remember the list at the top of this page which allows you to enter any of my six shops. I’ve added some nice Condors to The Agate Shop for the banded agate crowd.

I’m looking forward to spending another summer in Oregon. I plan to have an entertaining little travel trailer I named Caboose to abide in or to travel around in this summer, it’s a Casita and very cozy.

I wish you all a good summer and hope your collection gives you and your friends a great place to connect with the beauty of the natural world,

Thom

A Big Rock Show in Portland October 13 – 15th

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On Friday the 13th of this month the doors will open for the Portland Regional Rock and Mineral Show and some people say it’s the best yearly all agate and jasper show in the US. I’ve never been to this show before but I’ll post a report when it’s over.

I’ve been spending this summer west of Portland in Hillsboro which is where the show will take place. I was very happy to be included as a dealer and I’ve gotten some very nice pieces to add to my already large inventory. I went over to Denver and got fine Condors from Ana de los Santos and Mark Boche, the first really fine Polyhedroid I’ve seen for a long time and some nice Mexican and Moroccan agates… oh, on and on!

These are just a few of my striking new offerings, I hope you can join me.

Cheers,
Thom

Great Finds At The Denver Show

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I just returned to my summer home near Portland after spending four days at the Denver Gem and Mineral Show and it was wonderful. I added many new agates and they should arrive here tomorrow.

I had the pleasure of meeting Tomasz Praszkiera in the Merchandise Mart. Tomasz is the head of Spirifer Minerals and he told me they are no longer handling agates and just continuing as mineral dealers.  They were offering many fine Moroccan agates and Polish thundereggs.

Some early Lagunas and other Mexican agates came my way from Dr. John Leopold as well as the chance to select from his German collection.

I visited my friend Jeff Gallinger who had purchased the Hurst collection of German agates. I was surprised that there were two German collections to choose from since they are not easy to find.

Ana de los Santos and Mark Boche both provided choice Condor agates.

I was pleased to encounter Morrisonite slabs that the legendary miner, Jake Jacobitz, had sold to Betty Warrington in the late 1970s.

Polyhedroids were discovered in the dense jungles of Brazil in 1970 and mined briefly, the location was not found again and the available material is quite rare now. Imagine my surprise to find a real beauty.

Tom Wolfe Minerals has decided to stop carrying agate slabs to focus on cabochons and they were selling off some rare slabs such as wingate wash which delighted me.

I met many friends including Julian Grey, the director of the Rice Northwest Rock and Mineral Museum in Hillsboro, Oregon, and encountered the museum’s curator Leslie Moclock in the tent area outside the Coliseum.

These new agates will begin appearing in my stores at The Agate Trader in the next week or so.

I hope you have had a great summer and added some good agates to your collection.

70 Fine Slabs From 60 Years Of Collecting

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September 3rd, 2017

See them at The Slab Shop!

My passion for collecting fine agate and jasper slabs began early in my life when a neighbor began teaching me to cut cabochons. I became a professional lapidary in 1974 and still have a complete shop. As I searched for fine rough for my production I also kept an eye out for fine rare slabs which went into my collection. The time has come for me to find new homes for these pieces and I am offering these 70 ‘never seen’ slabs in that spirit.

There are jaspers from the US and agates from the US, Mexico and Madagascar. There are also Morrisonite jasper slabs and a collection of plume agates from the Bishop Ranch near Alpine Texas. The earliest are two slabs from The Agate Mine in Bloody Basin, Arizona which were purchased at the mine by Hans Gamma in 1952!

I hope you enjoy this unique offering.
Thom

Apache Agate, Ex Collection Roger Pabian

 

Picture Jaspers added to The Cabochon Store

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Fellow agateers,

I added two large offerings of Hans Gamma’s wonderful picture jasper cabs to The Cabochon Shop this May. Many of the cabochons are from rare jaspers and they are all identified. You can see pictures of all these varieties in Hans Gamma’s new book: Picture Jaspers of the Northwest. You can get a copy from Hans by visiting his website worldofjaspers.com.

I also posted eighteen Willow Creek jasper cabs in The Cabochon Shop. I cut them from an exceptional area in the deposit which was quickly exhausted. I liked it because the black strokes in the pale grey and tan backgrounds reminded me of the Sumi paintings made by Japanese Zen monks.

Now I’m settled in Oregon, my ETSY stores are open for business and new postings will be announced soon. Have a great summer,

Thom

A pillow cut cabochon
Owyhee Picture Jasper cut by Hans Gamma
large oval
a scenic desert beauty by Hans Gamma
Willow Creek Jasper Cab
Willow Creek cut by Thom Lane

The Tucson Show, January 24th – February 6th 2017

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I was a dealer at the Tucson Gem Show for two weeks. My room was in the Hotel Tucson (AKA The Inn Suites), the show of preference for many agate dealers.

My agates on display in my hotel room
just one wall of the showroom, a very nice place to show.

Please send an email to TheAgateTrader@gmail.com with the word subscribe and I’ll gladly add your email address and name to our emailing list so that you can hear about new material added to our ETSY stores and our schedule of shows in the coming months.

A gathering of agateers at Agate Corner, Hotel Tucson

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HELLO FELLOW AGATEERS,

Here’s a group photo from the show at the Hotel Tucson. Andres Carillo (on the left below) brought me polished agates from the Coyamito ranch in Mexico and next to Andres is another friend, Joshua Ritter, who sold me some superb Fighting Blood agates from China. The rest of the group are also agate lovers.

In the next couple of days I’ll be opening a new offering in The Agate Shop with many new specimens from Mexico, China, Argentina and Morocco. One by one I’ll rejuvenate the rest of the stores in this order: jaspers, thundereggs, slabs and then cabochons. If you would like to be on my mailing list for announcements, send me a note on my contact page. I look forward to hearing from you.

Peace,

Thom

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From left to right: Andres Carillo (Mexico), Joshua Ritter (Germany), Fady Kamer (The Netherlands), Ricardo Birnie (Argentina), Thom Lane (US), Hannes Holzemann (Austria), Dave Polson (US), Cedrine and Jerry Schaber (US)