The Definitive Guide to Franklin/Sterling Hill Wollastonite


A regularly recurring question in our Facebook Fluorescent Mineral Group is the differences between the various wollastonites found the the Ogdensburg area (areas around Franklin NJ). If you are a serious Franklin collector you can almost identify what boulder at which level in the mine a particular specimen was found, but most of us haven't spent our lives around Franklin, and just get to enjoy specimens we have silver picked - often with wrong or no IDs.

Dick Bostwick, one of the most knowledgeable folks around (in our fluorescent world) wrote an article for the FOMS Picking table in 2004 (Vol. 45, #2 Fall Issue) - "Wollastonite from Franklin NJ" and it is the definitive guide for the mineral. It is reposted here under a creative commons licence. Below is a preface of the introduction by Dick, with a link to the full pdf file.

Click the cover to the right to view, or the complete pdf can be downloaded here: FOMS Picking Table, V45, #2

(Excerpt): "Wollastonite is one of the most attractive fluorescent minerals of the Franklin-Sterling Hill district, where it exhibits a remarkable range of form, associations, and fluorescence. Other than the ubiquitous green-fluorescing willemite and red-fluorescing calcite for which the area is famous, Wollastonite is one of the most widely distributed fluorescent minerals at both the Franklin and Sterling Hill mines. Its fluorescence ranges from pale greenish yellow through orange-yellow and yellow-orange to deep orange and is best seen under shortwave ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Throughout this article, observations of mineral fluorescence have been made under shortwave UV unless specified otherwise.

As Franklin and Sterling Hill Wollastonite is almost always associated with calcite, and occasionally with willemite and other fluorescent minerals, specimens are usually quite attractive "under the lamp." At Franklin more than anywhere else, there are many visually distinctive types of Wollastonite that are eagerly sought by collectors. Describing and illustrating these many "finds" is the purpose of this article.

While not all of them are equally spectacular, the finest examples of Franklin Wollastonite are among the best fluorescent specimens in the world: shockingly bright and vibrant with contrasting fluorescent colors of orange, red, green, and violet."

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Read the rest of the article here: http://www.naturesrainbows.com/picking-table-wollastonite

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