Willemite, Calcite, Wollastonite, Fluorite - Garpenberg Mine, Sweden

From the collection of T. Österberg

The Garpenberg mine is located in Berglagen, a very old mining area in the southern part of Sweden. As early as 800 AD iron, silver and copper were mined. Today zinc, lead and silver ores are mined with copper and gold as by-products. The sulphide deposits at Garpenberg are distributed over 4 km, in several ore bodies found in complexly folded and faulted limestone, within an Early Proterozoic felsic volcanic succession. The stratigraphic succession is attributed to the volcanic cycle of a felsic caldera complex. The limestone hosting the ore is a stromatolitic carbonate, formed in a shallow, marine environment during a lull in volcanism. The ores formed by replacing the limestone and impregnating in veins of the volcanic rocks.

The mine is very active today and is one of Europe's most progressive underground mining operations. Collecting is not possbilbe, and the few specimens that reach collector's hands are highly prized. The mineralogy is quite similar to that of Franklin NJ. This specimen has willemite fluorescing green, calcite red/orange, wollastonite yellow and what is assumed to be fluorite fluorescing blue. The fluorescent response is quite remarkable under all wavelengths.

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