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Need some help identifying a piece
  
  Index -> FOR BEGINNERS: What is it? Where is it from?
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Proudtex76




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:07    Post subject: Need some help identifying a piece  

This was going in a dirt pile in San Jacinto County Texas. It exhibits blues, greens and reds


20170410_170244.jpg
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Texas, USA
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20170410_170244.jpg



20170410_170255.jpg
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kushmeja




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:21    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

It looks like opal, in particular boulder opal. Although I wasn't aware that opal like that was found in Texas, so I'm not certain. I did a quick Google search and apparently opal is found in Texas in very small quantities, but I was not able to see anything that looked like your piece.
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Dale Hallmark




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:26    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

Lots of Chalcedony found in Texas.
Most of San Jacinto County Texas is sands, clays, gravels, a lot of river deposits. Chert is found as well. Mostly fluvial and alluvium deposits.

I would say chalcedony.

Dale
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Bob Harman




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:29    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

I favor a small piece of decorative glass or porcelain etc. Man made and not natural, part of a decorative object such as a broken large vase, broken bowl, colorful swirled glass object etc. BOB
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Dale Hallmark




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:34    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

There is also common opal found in the Texas coastal plains. San Jacinto qualifies in that regard too.

Dale
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Tobi




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:38    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

I'm quite sure this is neither chalcedony nor something man-made like glass or porcelain. Looking at the opalescent parts of the specimen I think this is rather a piece of boulder opal like it is found in Australia ...
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kushmeja




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 15:40    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

Tobi wrote:
I'm quite sure this is neither chalcedony nor something man-made like glass or porcelain. Looking at the opalescent parts of the specimen I think this is rather a piece of boulder opal like it is found in Australia ...


Agree - this looks exactly like Australian boulder opal, but I wasn't aware of material like this from TX.
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Dale Hallmark




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 16:01    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

Texas has a lot of geological setings.
Very partial listing of mineral resources in Texas
Aluminum
Barite
Bentonite
Beryllium
Calcite
Chalcedony
Clays
Copper
Fluorite
Gold
Graphite
Gypsum & Anhydrite
Iron and Iron Minerals
Kaolinite
Lead
Manganese
Marble
Mercury
Molybdenum
Common Opal
Perlite
Salt & Halite
Silver
Strontium
Sulfur
Talc & Soapstone
Tin
Titanium
Topaz
Tungsten
Uranium
Zeolite
Zinc
Zirconium


Dale




kushmeja wrote:
Tobi wrote:
I'm quite sure this is neither chalcedony nor something man-made like glass or porcelain. Looking at the opalescent parts of the specimen I think this is rather a piece of boulder opal like it is found in Australia ...


Agree - this looks exactly like Australian boulder opal, but I wasn't aware of material like this from TX.
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SteveB




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 16:56    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

Boulder opal , matrix isalso called ironstone. Was it dug up or found on the surface. Away from human traffic or close? That is could it have been a dropped specimen rather than native to the area. But I'm dead certain its a photo of boulder opal you have there, it just might not be from where you found it, maybe dropped by another fossicker.
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Proudtex76




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 17:13    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

It's definitely not glass or pottery. It is stone. Possibly petrified wood but the iridescence along that line changing colors gives me pause. I have heard of opalized wood in this area but with the piece being so small it is hard to identify. The color band does change from green to blue to red depending on the angle.
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Proudtex76




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 17:14    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

It was found in a dirt pile used for firearms target practice.
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SteveB




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PostPosted: Apr 11, 2017 21:09    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

Proudtex76 wrote:
It's definitely not glass or pottery. It is stone. Possibly petrified wood but the iridescence along that line changing colors gives me pause. I have heard of opalized wood in this area but with the piece being so small it is hard to identify. The color band does change from green to blue to red depending on the angle.


Yep, thats ironstone, and 100% certainly opal. Completely worthless but still nice. Opal just cant be mistaken for anything else.
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Proudtex76




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PostPosted: Apr 12, 2017 08:31    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

Thanks everyone. I double checked with the person who found it and it turns out they were not being honest about the location of the find. Turns out the dirt pile was actually an old box. Still no boulder opal found in texas.
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Dale Hallmark




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PostPosted: Apr 12, 2017 09:05    Post subject: Re: Need some help identifying a piece  

A small segment from a report about Opal in Texas:

BUREAU OF ECONOMIC GEOLOGY
The University of Texas atAustin
Austin,Texas 78712

JOHN T. LONSDALE, Director
Report of Investigations— No. 42

Texas Gemstones
By Elbert A.King,Jr.


Opal other than as fossil or opalized wood occurs at the following several localities in Texas.
Approximately 16miles south of Alpine, Brewster County, precious opal occurs in very small seams and as cavity fillings in very hard pinkish-brown rhyolite. This opal is milky or bluish and commonly exhibits small flashes of blue, green-red, and orange fire. Individual pieces of this opal are mostly quite small, rarely over one fourth inch in diameter, and very difficult to remove from the tough rhyolite matrix.

Small finds of opal associated with rhyolites and basalts have come from other localities in west Texas, but the opal mostly does not display enough play of colors to warrant its use as gem material.

Near Freer, Duval County, some very attractive common opal has been found. The opal is colored various shades of pink, blue and yellow and in certain local areas occurs as fragments that are cemented together by clear chalcedony. Various colors are commonly found in the same piece, and such material yields handsome cabochons. Although the area has never been worked commercially, it has been hunted by collectors and cutters for several years.


Dale
PS this is not a comprehensive report on Opal in Texas
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