Chrysocolla
description: LOCALITY: Star of Congo Mine, Katanga, DRC 4" tall Although chrysocolla from The Star of Congo Mine is perceived as common in the modern mineral specimen market, this gaudy looking mineral specimen is in fact a world class specimen of chrysocolla. It displays the best color one could expect or ask for in this species. Chrysocolla is a copper-bearing silicate that is found in the supergene zone of copper deposits all over the world. It is not an uncommon mineral species but normally only consist of ugly and sparse crusts on matrix. In contrast, this piece consists of a thick, botryoidal, colorful and reasonably lustrous group of botryoidal chrysocolla on matrix. Star of Congo Mine was historically one of the most prolific mineral specimen producing mines in Katanga province. Christophe Gobin is historically one of the top two dealers in mineral specimens of Katanga. He told me that he built a great deal of his earlier career on mineral specimens removed from Star of Congo Mine. It is within less than 50 km of Lubumbashi. Christophe also told me that the ashes of his late father were scattered around Star of Congo Mine. Mr Gobin senior also had a great commitment, appreciation and love of the mineral specimens that this famous mine produced by the ton. Future prospects for specimen production from Star of Congo Mine are not good. In Katanga province today, mines that were once government operated have been mostly privatized. Under the modern profit motive driven regime that now controls Star of Congo, mineral specimen collection by mine personnel is more rigorously discouraged than what it was when the mine was government controlled. This locality also produces some of the finest known specimens of cornetite in existence. The giant cornetite specimen featured on this website was poached at night from Star of Congo Mine in 2008 or 2009. This large and heavy piece had to negotiate over or under a security fence that has not always surrounded the perimeter of this mining property.
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