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Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set

Posted by Kevin Myer  
Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
March 08, 2012 01:25AM
I recently purchased a box set of minerals that is labeled "Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania and Vicinity", "From the Garden Spot of America". I think it retailed for $1.75 and I believe it dates from the late 60's or early 70's. Photos of the box top (outside and inside) and contents are attached.




Can anyone provide history about this set? Do you know what entity put it together? Are the specimens bonafide Lancaster County specimens or did they come from a supply house's stock of mineral specimens?

The reason I bought the set is it has a piece of zinc ore from the Bamford Mine, which is now under a Kelloggs Plant. I've never seen a specimen of Bamford ore for sale anywhere and though I could gamble a few dollars just to say I have a piece of ore from the mine.
avatar Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
March 08, 2012 04:07AM
I had one of these sets a long time ago, and regrettably broke it up - its completely legitimate, everything is from the localities specified, but I don't know who put this together
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
March 08, 2012 06:42AM
I had one of these back in the early 1070's.
i purchased it at the Philadelphia Academy of Sciences gift shop on an elementary school trip.
The specimens ore from Lancaster County localities.
Thanks for sharing this as it brought back a lot of old memories
avatar Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
March 08, 2012 12:20PM
us    
I have several of these actually, with various qualities of specimens contained. I never understood the need to include "vicinity" minerals though. . . The magnetite and Pyrite are actually from French Creek in Chester Co., the Blue quartz from Chester Co., as well. Though they don't hide that fact, I always wondered "why them" rather than other locally notable Lancaster Co. mineral occurrences, the more than plentiful Limonite pseudos of pyrite and/or unaltered pyrite cube, nice magnetite octahedrons from Texas (near Woods Chrome mIne), etc., no real shortage of "actual" Lancaster Co. options. I've seen some fairly large masses of quite nice yellow Mica from the Gap area (from old collections), so it was nice to see it was included in this set as well.

As for what organization initiated and produced these sets, I haven't uncovered that fact either, despite wanting to know myself.

MRH
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
March 08, 2012 12:27PM
This is just a guess, but Rick Haefner (now deceased), a former PSU alum and a geologist, used to put mineral kits together for sale in his garage in Lancaster, PA. It was quite an ambitious business for a number of years. I can't recall the details, but somewhere around here (somewhere....) I have a book that contains them, plus photos.
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
March 12, 2012 03:13PM
Hi
From what I know, I would concur with Earls history of the boxes.
His nephew Chris Haefner recently spoke at the BMS meeting about a book he wrote on the Pequea mine in Lancaster County.
I asked about the boxes and from what I recall, his uncle also has a arrangement with the Smithsonian for cards or boxes for their gift shop as well.
If you Google Chris Haefner, you should be able to get to his blog which will allow you to contact him and ask any further questions that you have.
He did mention working with his uncle and breaking up material to affix to the cards.
Greg Kokolus
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
June 23, 2012 01:32AM
To any and all who may be interested. I am the nephew of the deceased professor, Dr. Richard Haefner. From 1972 to 1988 I helped make; meaning, collect and crack and set tens of thousands of these and other mineral boxes in the 'Rock Shop' in Lancaster Pa. The business ran from about 1966 to 1996. To find out more just e-mail me at silverfordinc@yahoo.com. Also, a few months ago my e-mail was corrupted and someone stole it and began making e-mails from it - it wasn't me. I used an alternate one from about March to May. Sorry if anyone got an e-mail back that wasn;t from me. God Bless. Chris haefner
avatar Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
June 29, 2012 03:35PM
Kevin, If the set were mine, I would not remove the zinc ore from it. I think the historical value of the set is probably a lot greater than the piece of ore.
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
August 28, 2013 09:18PM
Greg Kokolus Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Hi
> From what I know, I would concur with Earls
> history of the boxes.
> His nephew Chris Haefner recently spoke at the BMS
> meeting about a book he wrote on the Pequea mine
> in Lancaster County.
> I asked about the boxes and from what I recall,
> his uncle also has a arrangement with the
> Smithsonian for cards or boxes for their gift shop
> as well.
> If you Google Chris Haefner, you should be able to
> get to his blog which will allow you to contact
> him and ask any further questions that you have.
> He did mention working with his uncle and breaking
> up material to affix to the cards.
> Greg Kokolus

After a one-year's contemplation I have begun the process of bringing back the rock boxes that were part of a 30-year business concern for the Haefner family. There will however be a few changes; replacemets for the chrome ore and zinc ore for sure ae these can not be collected any more or at least not in the quantities necessary to carry on with an enterprise... Currently I am gathering up materials and I have 'rights' to the specifics of configuration for the boxes. Further, future posts will randomly update the progress... Chris Haefner...Lancaster Pa
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
August 28, 2013 09:23PM
Actual work has begun; collecting specific rocks and minerals that will be used on the new Pennsylvania Rock and Mineral boxes. The original design can not be improved upon and so therefore it will be used once more. Sometime in 2014 the first of these boxes will become available - if all goes according to plan... sorry to say that zinc ore and chrome ore can not be included as they are not readily available in quantity any more for a going concern. Two types of boxes are being made; a Pennsylvania box and one for the Smithsonian which will include interesting specimens from around the Americas... Chris Haefner... Lancaster Pa
Re: Minerals of Lancaster County Pennsylvania - set
August 31, 2013 02:32PM
The magnetite ore is from the magnetite ore mine two miles distant from the Pequea Silver Mine just as the mineral box indicates. I helped collect it. The magnetic ore mine operated in the 1890s and was then abandoned. Today, there are still working there; all to be seen. Tons of the ore is still strewn around the now-flooded mine adit...

Christopher L. Haefner
Lancaster Pa geologist
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