It’s predicted this glorious Galena originally came from the Commodore Mine, near Creede, Colorado, or possibly the Galena Queen Mine in the San Juans?

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While it looks nearly identical to other Galena specimens that are photographed to have come from the Commodore Mine, it cannot be guaranteed that this originally came from there. However, this was purchased from the Grand Junction Gem and Mineral Club to support Scholarships for Geology students at Colorado Mesa University, and was donated to them by someone that likely got it from somewhere nearby, so likely either there, or somewhere in the San Juans, such as the Galena Queen Mine? However, this came in a larger collection with more Galena cubes and the Galena and Pyrite on Quartz that was also recently uploaded, and they all look pretty similar to some extent, and identical to those from the Commodore Mine, but, it’s as likely they all came from one place as that they didn’t, so your guess is as good as anyone else’s…

Galena has a hardness of 2½ and a specific gravity of 7.60. It was first named nearly 2,000 years ago by Pliny the Elder in 77-79AD from the Greek “galene” meaning “lead ore”. According to Mindat, “it is found in ore veins with sphalerite, pyrite, chalcopyrite, tennantite-tetrahedrite, etc. and in skarns, as well as in sedimentary rocks where it may replace carbonate beds or be deposited in pore spaces. The crystals are bright when fresh but often tarnish after exposure to air.”

As Galena is the primary ore for Lead, and has been worked for more than 5,000 years for that reason, this would make for a perfect sample for element collectors!

With more than 28,000 known localities around the world, it’s quite likely you can find some near to you, and as well as on your next hike –  if you keep an eye out for a mineral like this! While Lead itself isn’t a very valuable metal, as it’s often found with other associated metals, you may just discover a new Zinc, Cadmium, or possibly even Silver and Gold mine, as well!



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