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SMMP Newsletter

Volume 6, #1     

January 24, 2003

Inside:
Tucson Meeting
President's Message
Web Site and Email
Meeting Minutes
SMMP Europe
Commission on Museums
AMNH News
GIA News
Meetings of Interest
Tracking Dues

Board of Directors:

President & Newsletter Ed.
Anthony R. Kampf
Nat. Hist. Mus. of Los Angeles Co.
900 Exposition Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90007, USA

Past President
Mark H. F. Mauthner
Pacific Mineral Museum
848 W. Hastings St.
Vancouver, BC V6C 1C8, CANADA

Vice President
Carl Francis
Harvard Mineralogical Museum
24 Oxford Street
Cambridge, MA 02138, USA

Secretary
Virgil W. Lueth
New Mexico Bureau of Mines
801 Leroy Place
Socorro, NM 87801, USA

Treasurer
Anna M. Domitrovic
Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
2021 N. Kinney Road
Tucson, AZ 85743, USA


Dimitri Belakovskii

Fersman Mineralogical Museum
Leninskii Prospect 18-2
117071 Moscow, RUSSIA

Jean F. DeMouthe
California Academy of Science
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco, CA 94118, USA

George E. Harlow
American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West at 79th St.
New York, NY 10024, USA

Paula N. Wilson
Utah Museum of Natural History
1390 E. Presidents Circle
Salt Lake City, UT, USA

Michael A. Wise
Dept. of Mineral Sciences, MRC-19
National Museum of Natural History
Washington, DC 20560, USA

TUCSON MEETING

Date: Thursday, Feb. 13, 2003
Place: Tucson Convention Center
Crystal Ballroom
Board Meeting: 2:00 3:00 PM
Membership Meeting: 3:00 4:00 PM
Program: 4:00 5:00 PM

Tucson Program:
Mineral Repairs, Restorations and Fakes

Bryan Lees
Collectors Edge Minerals

Mineral Repair and Restoration

Anthony Kampf
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

Recognizing Mineral Fakes

Tucson Exhibit: Mineral Fakes
Please notify Jean DeMouthe if you have specimens for our exhibit.

PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE

As I prepare to turn over the reins of SMMP, I look back on my two short years as president and realize that there is much that I set out to do that remains undone. I suppose that it is a fact of life in an organization such as ours that progress comes quite incrementally. Nevertheless, there are several concrete, positive steps that we have taken that I feel bode well for our future.

During the last two years, we have established formal affiliations with two very significant organizations: the American Geological Institute and the Natural Science Collections Alliance. While both are based in North America, many of the issues that they deal with are international in scope.

We have also begun an informal working relationship with the IMA Commission on Museum, which includes the maintenance of their Web site as a sub-site of our own. It is my hope that this relationship will prove truly symbiotic, if I can borrow a term from our biological brethren.

Our relationship with the Commission on Museums was a natural outgrowth of our society's effort to become more international. The establishment of a European branch, SMMP Europe, has certainly facilitated our international reach and it is my hope that other branches will be formed on other continents. Perhaps Australia will be next.

The growth in our membership has reflected our more international reach. Our membership now numbers 106 and more than 1/4 are outside of North America. We are still a long way from our goal of uniting all mineral museum professionals around the world, but with your help and through the power of electronic communication, I am confident that each year will bring us incrementally closer to that goal.

Tony Kampf, President

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SMMP Web site: www.smmp.net

SMMP Group Email Address: smmp@nhm.org

* * *

MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING

DENVER:  September 13, 2002

Board Meeting

Secretary Lueth called the meeting to order at 2:30 p.m. M.H.F. Mauthner, V.W. Lueth, A.M. Domitrovic, J.F. DeMouthe, and M. A. Wise were present.

Financial Report: Anna Domitrovic, Treasurer, submitted a written financial report to the Board. A motion to accept the financial report as presented was passed.

Collections Committee: Virgil Lueth, chair of the collections committee, reported on the job posting in Cartersville, GA, recently added to the web site.

Computer Committee: No Report

Education Committee: Jean DeMouthe volunteered to act as Education chair and coordinate the case at Tucson.

Publications Committee: Jean DeMouthe, chair of the publications committee, reported that she received no response to a call for articles. She noted that most of our publications should focus on web site utilization. 

Stolen Specimens: no recent activity noted on our web site.

AGI Reports: K-12  Science Education Susan Erikson reported on a new AGI web page dedicated to K-12 education at the national level. Society Council Tony Kampf

 SMMP Europe: Anna Domitrovic read an email report provided by A. Kampf. Seven new members have been added.

 Other Business:

 Potential Workshop Topic: Specimen Classification: Terminology and definitions of what constitutes repair, restoration, enhancement. Originally suggested by Carl Francis and Brian Lees as a subject in which SMMP could lead discussion or set criteria.

 Potential SMMP sponsored project (M. Mauthner and Jack Murphy) mineral/gemstone web site for each state using public domain maps and museum specimens. Mark will have a demonstration at the general meeting.

 Secretary Lueth adjourned the meeting at 2:50.

General Membership Meeting

Secretary Lueth called the meeting to order at 3:00 p.m. in the Lecture Hall of the Denver Merchandise Mart Expo Hall. The traditional introductions started the meeting.

Approval of the Minutes of the Last Meeting: A motion and second to approve the minutes from the last meeting as presented in the SMMP Newsletter passed.

Treasurers Report: Anna Domitorvic, Treasurer, submitted a written financial report to the meeting.

Committee Reports:

Computer Committee: no report.

Collections Committee: Virgil Lueth, chair of the collections committee, reported on the job posting in Cartersville, GA, recently added to the web site.

Education: Jean DeMouthe volunteered to act as Education chair and coordinate the case at Tucson. The title of the case will be mineral repairs and restorations.

Publications: Jean DeMouthe, chair of the publications committee, reported that she received no response to a call for articles. She noted that most of our publications should focus on web site utilization.

Stolen Specimens: no recent activity noted on our web site.

AGI Reports:

K-12  Science Education Susan Erikkson reported on a new AGI web page dedicated to K-12 education at the national level.

Society Council no report

SMMP Europe: Anna Domitrovic read an email report from the SMMP Europe group provided by A. Kampf. Seven new members have been added to the Societys roles.

Other Business:

1.       Potential Workshop Topic: Specimen Classification: Terminology and definitions of what constitutes repair, restoration, enhancement. Originally suggested by Carl Francis and Brian Lees as a subject in which SMMP could lead discussion or set criteria.  Extensive discussion ensued and the group agreed the topic would be a welcome topic for our workshop at the Tucson meeting.

2.       Potential SMMP sponsored project (M. Mauthner and Jack Murphy) mineral/gemstone web site for each state using public domain maps and museum specimens. Interactive maps of each state would augment the state mineral occurrence lists published in Rocks and Minerals. Mark provided a demonstration at the close of the general meeting.

A motion to adjourn the meeting was made by Jean DeMouthe and seconded by Anna Dometrovic. The motion passed and the meeting was adjourned at 2:40.

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SMMP EUROPE

Informal meetings of SMMP were held in conjunction with the IMA General Meeting in Edinburgh, Scotland (Sept. 5) and The Munich Mineral Show (Oct. 25) organized by SMMP Europe. Formal minutes were not taken, but it is safe to say that in both instances members took advantage of the opportunity to share information, discuss issues of common interest, renew acquaintances and make new connections.

In Edinburgh the meeting included tours of the collection and research facilities in the Geology Department of the National Museum of Scotland. Peter Davidson and Brian Jackson are thanked, in particular, for their efforts in making that meeting a rousing success. Among the more perplexing issues that was discussed was the difficulty that members outside the U.S. have in paying society dues. No simple, cost-effective means for dealing with currency conversion and transmission to SMMP treasurer Anna Domitrovic in Tucson, Arizona, has yet been devised.

* * *

IMA COMMISSION ON MUSEUMS

The Web site for the IMA Commission on Museums is now up and running. You can access it at www.smmp.net/IMA-CM. The site includes a list of national representatives to the Commission with contact information. For anyone interested in the discussions, decisions and general business of the Commission, minutes of meetings are posted.

You will also find a preliminary version of the Catalogue of Type Mineral Specimens (CTMS). If you need to locate the depository of the type specimen of a mineral, this is a wonderful resource. This information can also be accessed in the commercial mineral database MDAT-Lite. You are encouraged to submit corrections and additions to the data in the CTMS to Toni Stalder.

* * *

AMNH NEWS

Joe Peters Retires

With mixed emotions, we announce the retirement of Joseph J. Peters, senior scientific assistant in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences at the American Museum of Natural History as of February, 2003. Joe is the man with the mineral collection in his head, as compared to person he assists, George Harlow, the curator. Joe arrived at the Museum in 1975 as an intern to assist then curator Vince Manson and stayed on to fill the assistant position after the department reconfiguration in 1976. Anyone familiar with activities at the AMNH knows Joe's importance; all will feel Joe's departure from the scene. He will move on to greener pastures (and green thumb activities) at the house of Nancy, his wife, and his on the east end of Long Island. Joe will also be sorely missed by George Harlow and his colleagues, although he will be volunteering to assist in the transition as we hire a replacement; well, not a replacement, but a new assistant.

Job Opening: Scientific Assistant

The Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences at the American Museum of Natural History seeks an individual to assist in the management of and research on its world-class mineral and gem collections. Applicants must have obtained a bachelors degree (or higher) and be competent and interested in mineralogy and related fields in geoscience and/or gemology. Experience with X-ray diffraction, electron microprobe analysis, relational database systems and collections management are desirable. Salary in upper-20s and excellent benefits. The position is available as of February, 2003. Please submit a letter of introduction and interest plus rsum and names of professional references to:

George E. Harlow
Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences
American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192
gharlow@amnh.org
An Equal Opportunity Employer

* * *

GIA NEWS

GIA Hires a New Curator
(Excerpted from a GIA news release)

The Gemological Institute of America, (GIA) has appointed Terri Ottaway as Curator of the organization's Museum at the their world headquarters in Carlsbad, California. According to Elise Misiorowski, director of the GIA Museum, Ottaway is responsible for coordinating acquisition, cataloging and exhibition of GIAs permanent and traveling gem and jewelry collections. Misiorowski added that Ottaway will also work closely with GIAs Education department to ensure instructors and students take full advantage of the resources available to them in GIAs permanent collection.

Before joining the GIA, Ottaway worked for 22 years in the Earth Sciences Department of the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Canada, where she was involved in the concept, design and implementation of a 15,000 square-foot gallery of Earth Sciences. While doing research for her Masters thesis at the Muzo Emerald Mine in Colombia, Ottaway became the first person to determine how the emerald deposits in Colombia were formed. Her research made the cover of Nature magazine in 1994.

 Terri brings a level of understanding and knowledge of museum procedures to the curatorial duties here at GIA, Misiorowski said. In addition to cataloging the collection, she has been providing expertise and thoughtful assistance in putting together the policies and procedures for the Museum, and helping with exhibit planning and development. I am truly delighted to have Terri here as our curator and look forward to building the collection and developing a world class museum in the years to come.

Best of the Best Jewelry Exhibit at GIA
(Excerpted from a GIA news release)

Prize-winning jewelry designs, gemstone carvings, and design renderings from some of the worlds most prestigious jewelry competitions are now on display in a new exhibition at the Gemological Institute of Americas world headquarters in Carlsbad, California. Titled, Best of the Best, the exhibit features award-winning pieces representing internationally celebrated competitions such as the American Gem Trade Associations (AGTA) Spectrum, Cutting Edge, and Platinum Honors Awards; the DeBeers Diamond International Award; the Swarovski Signity World Facet Awards; the Perles de Tahiti Tahitian Pearl Trophy; and the Womens Jewelry Association (WJA) Diva Awards. Michael Dyber, Glenn Lehrer, G.G., Holly Croft, G.G., Paula Crevoshay, Barbara M. Berk, G.G., and Mark Schneider are just a few of the highlighted artists.

This exhibit is an amazing display of superlative workmanship in jewelry and gems.  It is the first exhibit at GIA that features award-winning jewelry and gems, and we are very excited about it, said GIA Museum Director Elise Misiorowski. Many of these extraordinary artists are GIA graduates, and to see them succeed in the international competition arena is an inspiration for students, newcomers and designers alike; with that we are especially thrilled.

The Best of the Best exhibition will be on display through April 2003. It is free and open to the public Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except when the Institute is closed for holidays.

* * *

OTHER MEETINGS OF INTEREST

5th International Conference on Mineralogy & Museums
Paris, France - 5-8 September 2004

Organising Committee:
General chairwoman: Lydie Touret (cole des Mines de Paris)
Scientific program: Michel Guiraud (Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle,
Paris

Hosted by
Societ Franaise de Minralogie et de Cristallographie (SFMC)

Venue:
The cole des Mines, in the center of Paris, will provide fully equipped lecture theaters and conference rooms with seating capacity for up to 300 persons per lecture theater.

Preliminary Topics:
The program will embrace the four main aspects of Museum work, namely research, collections management, history and public program/exhibitions. The conference schedule will be such that no concurrent oral sessions will occur. Each session will start with a keynote speech by an invited speaker and will end with a round table summarizing and discussing the major aspects presented during the day. In order to allow sufficient time for discussion, the number of oral presentations will be limited. A poster session running in parallel will be used for all other contributions.
Museums and Research: Systematic mineralogy, nomenclature, documenting diversity, igneous/metamorphic/sedimentary rocks, meteorites, gems, environmental mineralogy, new analytical techniques.
Museums and Collection Management: Acquisition, Conservation, Scientific databasing. This session will have a round table on focused issues, such as sulfides conservation.
Museums and History of Sciences: Historical collections, biographies.
Museums and Society: Permanent and temporary exhibitions, architecture, education, amateurs societies.

Specials Events:
IMA commissions
Exhibitions : scientific equipment, software, others
Working groups such as one on preparing European integration and European network.

Field Trips:
Preliminary arrangement have been made for field trips to:
Alps: Museum of Grenoble and Bourg d'Oisans, Oisans massif (type locality of axinite, prehnite, crichtonite) and Mont Blanc massif (pink fluorite, anatase...).
Massif Central: volcanoes of Cantal, Velay, Vivarais; Geopark of Vulcania with the possibility of a balloon trip.
Vosges: Old mines of Sainte Marie aux Mines District, Ensisheim, and Idar Oberstein Museum and lapidary workshops.

For more information, visit the Conference Web site:
www.ensmp.fr/Fr/Actualites/Agenda/PDF/MM5.html

* * *

TRACKING DUES

SMMP dues are $10.00 U.S., payable to Anna Domitrovic, treasurer, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, 2021 N. Kinney Road, Tucson, AZ, 85743. Any directory changes or additions should be sent to Tony Kampf. In Europe, dues can be remitted to Jana Hork, National Museums & Galleries of Wales, Cathays Park, Cardiff CF10 3NP, WALES.

Note that you can check your dues payment status on the SMMP on-line roster. The year shown in the last column indicates the last year for which you have paid. If you are delinquent, please remit your dues payment as soon as possible.

 


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