Rare Mineral Specimens Net Over $2M At Nature & Science Auction

Nature & Science auction

Photos Courtesy of Heritage Auctions

The term “rock stars” is redefined as these mineral specimens netted more than $2M at Heritage Auctions’ Nature & Science auction on October 19-20 in Dallas, Texas. A purple fluorite specimen that measures out to a five-inch square of barite, sphalerite, and calcite crystal accents that sold for $125k was the highest-priced lot of the two-day event. 

"Now is the time to consider consigning high-grade examples of fine minerals," said James Walker, director of nature and science at Heritage. "Established collectors are looking for unique items for their collections and we're seeing a whole new community of collectors getting ever more comfortable purchasing exotic varieties through [Heritage Auctions]."

 Nature & Science auction

A legrandite specimen uncovered in Mexico sold for $93,750 and a tourmaline spray found in Brazil went for $81,250. Other highlights included a specimen of yellow sulfur sitting on a block of dark calcite, mined in Sicily, which sold for $68,750. A rose quartz on quartz from the private collection of scientist and author Fred Pough sold for $37,500. A seven-inch translucent crystal from the Brazilian aquamarine fetched $35k, and a Marra Mamba tiger’s-eye sphere from Western Australia tapped out at $22,500.

 Nature & Science auction

Fossils and natural history specimens also were sold in addition to the fine mineral specimens.  A gem ammonite in matrix, estimated to be 70 million years old was the leader in this category and sold for $40,625. Additionally, a rare ichthyosaur fossil unearthed in Germany transacted for $35k.  An egg from an extinct elephant bird (an animal that inhabited the island of Madagascar) sold for $31,250, and a wall-size plate containing the preserved fossils of 10 fish representing two different genera realized $23,750.

 Nature & Science auction

Rare meteorites also were included in the lots, including the heralded Sikhote-Alin meteorite from Russia, which was part of the largest meteor shower known in the history of mankind history, which fetched $13,750. A Gibeon meteorite that was found in Namibia and a large Odessa meteorite both slotted in the sold for $23,750 and  $21,250, respectively.

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James Rothaar

James has written content for and other leading online luxury lifestyle magazines. Rothaar previously served as the senior-tenured staff writer for JustLuxe, having worked with the digital magazine since 2005. He resides in Jacksonville, Florida, and works as an independent marketing consultant and freelance writer and copywriter. He is the co-owner of Wild Owl Digital, a boutique mar...(Read More)

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