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Specimens stolen from Minerals Unlimited

Posted by Wendi Elkins  
Wendi Elkins January 08, 2011 09:31PM
On January 4th or 5th Minerals Unlimited was broken into. Many specimens were stolen, including our green fuzzy "velvet" malachite specimen that has been in Ralph E. Merrill's collection since the 1950's and still belongs to Mimi Merrill, my mother. I know the picture is not very large, but it's the best I can do on short notice. I suspect that the burglars were stupid teens, and probably simply grabbed the specimen, which would have destroyed it. If they were smarter than I think they were, they would have handled this delicate specimen carefully, and it will show up for sale at some point. It's about 3.5 by 5.5 inches in size, from the Copper Queen Mine in Bisbee. While they took the label for this specimen, they left behind the labels for all of the other items they took, so I don't think they have any idea what they were doing.
If anyone sees it, we would like to know!
open | download - logo.jpg (51 KB)
Bri Dragonne January 08, 2011 10:46PM
Gosh, this is terrible. They probably (Like you stated) just did it for fun or whatnot and will probably dump everything in the end when they realise they cannot just sell it easily.

We had a theft from the collection I am working through and it was about the same thing, stupid theft by someone who didn't know what they stole and got probably about 40 euros for 1,000 Euros of stuff.


My sympathies.

Robert Meyer January 09, 2011 02:29AM
This is very bad news. Minerals Unlimited has a well-deserved stellar reputation among suppliers of mineral specimens due to its over sixty years of serving the mineral collector community, and I feel that one of my treasured institutions has been violated. My first parcel from Minerals Unlimited came in about 1977, and Minerals Unlimited has been my favorite ever since.

I fondly remember the Malachite specimen from my visits to Minerals Unlimited. The piece is extremely delicate, far more so than the attached photograph would suggest, and it is hard to imagine how a careless movement, such as by a thief, could not result in significant damage. It is a real loss. I recall once discussing with Ralph Merrill and Wendi how I might get such a specimen safely home if I were to buy it. Our conclusion was that it would have to ride on my lap, which pretty much would eliminate air travel in today's environment. Feeling some nostalgia for the piece, I asked Wendi to send me a photograph of the specimen a few years ago, and I have attached it. I think it is a better shot than the one Wendi attached above.

Bob Meyer
open | download - Malachite-Bisbee-Minerals Unlimited.JPG (386.1 KB)
Jenna Mast February 13, 2011 07:38AM

How horrible! I hope the thieves are caught, and/or the specimens are recovered. I will definitely keep my eye out. Do you have photos of any of the other specimens they took?
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