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Bill Baker Barr's Mindat Home Page

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BBB's Mindat Home Page

Registered member since 26th Mar 2006

Bill Baker Barr has uploaded:
12 Mineral Photos
 
Three events doomed me to a fate of pounding on rocks for fun instead of doing whatever it is that normal people do:
New Orleans, 1955. My father found a banded agate down by the Mississippi and gave it to me. He had taken a mineralogy class for fun while studying pharmacy at Michigan, and knew all about that little pebble. My six-year-old self decided rocks were cool and I was going to collect them.
New York City, 1957. My first visit to the American Museum of Natural History as a fourth grader was the closest thing to a religious experience I’ll ever have.* Initially a budding paleontologist, I was eventually lured away by the colors of the minerals and the symmetry of crystals.
Ann Arbor, 1969. On my second attempt (out of five!) at the U. in Ann Arbor, I also studied mineralogy for fun while majoring in something different. My teacher was Dr. Donald Peacor; I was the only non-geology major and only mineral collector in the class. We took a field trip to the Maybee Quarry in Monroe Co., Michigan, a world-class specimen locality. Boom!

Mineral interests
• First love: agate, still going strong.
• First favorite mineral: garnet group, ditto.
• All-time #1: fluorite, plus the secret world of fluorescent minerals.
• Contenders: beryl, apatite group, pegmatite minerals in general, and I’ve always had a weakness for adamite.
• Homeboy treasures: minerals collectible in and near Michigan, including celestine, sulfur, calcite, pyrite, sphalerite, gypsum, baryte, galena, marcasite, quartz, strontianite, copper, prehnite, zeolites, epidote, pumpellyite, hematite, siderite, goethite.
• Favorite locality: Ojuela Mine, Mapimí, Mun. de Mapimí, Durango, Mexico. Some day I hope to go there, get down on my hands and knees, kiss the ground and say, “¡Gracias!”
• Bucket list: Australia (soon!), the Pacific Northwest, the rest of Canada, Scotland and Germany for agates, Hawaii, …

In 1986, my wife Margaret and I honeymooned by circling Lake Superior, collecting amethyst at Thunder Bay, Ontario, agate and thomsonite in Minnesota, and copper and zeolites on the Keweenaw Peninsula in upper Michigan. Soon after, we were able to get into Maybee again, and I was the one who had to drag her away from the quarry.
We discovered the world of rock clubs about then, and expanded our collecting range considerably on field trips all around the Great Lakes, upstate New York, New England, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, South Dakota, and Canada from the Maritimes west to Manitoba. After visiting Rockhound State Park in 1975, I swore I’d live in New Mexico one day. That happened, from 2007-2012, and we explored New Mexico, Colorado, Utah, and bits of Arizona and Texas.

*Other than seeing Genesis do “Supper’s Ready” from the first row of Pease Auditorium, Ypsilanti MI, Dec. 8, 1973.

 

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