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Maine State Mineral
(Complex Aluminium Borosilicate)
Adopted in 1971.
Tourmaline, Complex Aluminium Borosilicate, occurs as lustrous, elongate crystals which commonly have a rounded triangular cross section and narrow grooves running parallel to their long direction. It was adopted as the Maine state mineral in 1971.
Maine Legislature Archives
The crystals range in size from microscopic to over a foot long. The best examples in Maine are found in a very coarse-grained type of granite called "pegmatite". The slow cooling and solidification of the pegmatite veins allowed the mineral grains to grow to much larger sizes than in ordinary granite. The black tourmaline crystals and many of the brightly colored ones are usually encased in the surrounding rock. However, conditions in some places favored the development of open cavities in which elbaite crystals grew with greater perfection and clarity. These pegmatite "pockets" are the source of Maine's finest gem tourmalines.
Several spectacular tourmaline pockets were discovered in the Dunton Mine in Newry, Maine, in 1972. Many fabulous red and green crystals were found, including the ten-inch "Jolly Green Giant," which is now in the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C.
Tourmaline comes in many colors such as blue, yellow, pink, red, black, green and clear. Tourmaline comes in many colors - but primarily in pink and green. It is beautiful in rings, necklaces, and pendants.
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