Greetings from the Land of Enchantment (just east of
I am watching the current legislative sessions,
probably like you; to see how deep budgets cuts will go this year. We
have been under a hiring freeze since last year and now there is talk
about pay cuts. Some state employees have been required to take unpaid
furloughs. Its not unemployment, but it still is unsettling. Abstract
thoughts like "tightening the state's belt"
become real when you are on the wrong end of the belt. No museums are
threatened with closure in New Mexico but I'm not sure that holds for
all museums in this recession ravaged land.
Convincing those with the purse strings that
museums are important is why I am interested in attendance and donation
figures among our membership. It seems many politicians view museums as
easy targets for cutting. But, during hard times I believe they are
accessed more but probably receive less in donations. Our own attendance
has increased significantly over the last two years (5%) and our
symposium set a record for attendance last fall with an over 40%
increase from 200 to 287. During that same time, our donations have
stayed fairly level. What is happening at your place? By compiling this
information, I believe we can point out to our "decision-makers"
that museums are more important during hard times and should be treated
with a kind hand at budget slicing time. Besides, I have not noticed the
prices of specimens going down lately!
Finally, as you make preparations for the trip to
Tucson, check your collections for pieces that would fit in the SMMP
exhibits. Jean DeMouthe puts in significant time in preparing our very
well received cases. Please make her job a bit easier and take the time
to find something to contribute.
Looking forward to seeing
you all in Tucson,
Virgil Lueth, President
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- TUCSON 2010
they, where are they from?
carvings made from materials not usually thought of as gems.
The TGMS proposed that SMMP present two exhibits this
year. We agreed on a theme topic at Denver last year
"Unexpected Gemstones." The other may be beneficial to our collections titled,
"Mystery Specimens." How many pieces reside in your collection with
incomplete locality or even identification information? Perhaps you
don't believe a locality label for that particular piece. Bring them out
and the entire mineral collecting community can provide their opinions
and perhaps solve a museum mystery for you.
* * *
MINUTES OF THE
Click on the link above to view the
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ATTENDANCE AND DONATIONS
We would still like
information on your attendance and donations activity over the last 5
years. The recession has provided the opportunity to evaluate museum
activities during an economic downturn. Send your numbers to Virgil
Lueth (email@example.com) or bring
them to Tucson. A presentation of the results will be forthcoming in the
fall newsletter. Thanks to those who have provided information.
* * *
2010 Board of Directors election
Three board member terms will be expiring this year. Please
be prepared to nominate candidates and vote. Board members whose terms expire
this year are:
Jean DeMouthe Jeffrey Post
Note that the term expiration dates of the board members are provided in parentheses in the sidebar.
* * *
BEST PRACTICES PROJECT
Practices" documents are posted on the SMMP website at:
We are actively looking for more volunteers to
author other best practice documents.
* * *
SMMP RESEARCH STUDY
Awards are to support curatorial research and methodologies that address
one or more of the Society of Mineral Museum Professionals (SMMP)
mission statement goals: 1) foster recognition of mineral science
collections as essential scientific, educational and cultural resources,
2) promote support for growth, maintenance and use of collections and
exhibits and, 3) advance museum practice through cooperation in the
development, review and dissemination of information. Amounts vary up to
a maximum of $1000 per grant. Grant awards determined by SMMP Board of
Directors. Grant applications and more details are posted on our
Grant proposals are due: August 1, 2010.
* * *
INTERNATIONAL MINERALOGICAL ASSOCIATION
2010 GENERAL MEETING
Hungary - August
Dear friends and colleagues,
We would like to invite your contributions to the General session
MH110G: "Mineral Museums
and Historical Mineralogy",
which is organized in the framework of the forthcoming IMA2010
meeting in Budapest (August 21-27, 2010).
Contributions to this general session are welcome from all fields of
museum-related research, management and educational activities, as well
as historical mineralogy that are not covered by the specialised
sessions proposed for IMA2010 within the "MINERAL
MUSEUMS AND HISTORICAL MINERALOGY" theme. The
session will be a place of reunion of curators, researchers and
conservators in mineral museums, of mineralogy historians as well as for
all scientists that feel themselves connected to these topics to meet
and to discuss their recent results.
For additional information, registration and abstract submission,
please, visit the IMA2010 official site (http://www.ima2010.hu)
as well as the webpage of the theme, including two other specialized
We would like to remind you of some of the relevant upcoming deadlines:
January 31: Early bird (reduced rate) registration
closes; Early bird grant application closes
March 6: Abstract submission closes; Grant application
April 23: Abstract acceptance confirmation
April 30: Normal rate registration closes
The convenors of this session would like to wish you a happy holiday
season and a prosperous and fruitful New Year! We look forward to
meeting you in Budapest!
With best friendly wishes,
Dana Pop (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dmitry Belakovsky (email@example.com),
Renate Schumacher (R.Schumacher@uni-bonn.de),
Lydie Touret (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* * *
During the past year the Mineral Museum at Montana Tech
has acquired a large and spectacular cluster of smoky quartz crystals
from a pegmatite near Butte. We have also added five new well-lit
exhibit cases. We have devoted one of these to Northern Michigan
copper and another to Bisbee specimens. Within the next year we plan on
adding more new exhibit cases.
Royal Ontario Museum
* * *
American Geological Institute (AGI)
Collections Alliance NSCA)
Although the Society of Mineral
Museum Professionals maintains no official ties with the
Commission on Museums
(CM) of the
International Mineralogical Association
(IMA), the Commission resolved at its December, 2000, meeting in Melbourne,
Australia, to support SMMP's efforts in uniting mineral museum professionals
* * *
SMMP LIST SERVER
are encouraged to interact with your fellow SMMP members via our list server:
when you reply to an email sent via our list server,
you will be replying to the sender, although you have the option of copying the
Tony Kampf processes additions to and
deletions from the list server. That way we limit
the list to our membership and if a member decides that they want to be dropped
from the list, Tony will know whether to send them the
SMMP Newsletter by snail mail. Note that you are only able to
send via the list server from your email address that is on the list server.
This should be the same one that is used in our on-line roster.
* * *
are $10.00 U.S., payable to Anna Domitrovic, treasurer,
6118 W. Lazy Heart Street,
Tucson, AZ 85713. Any directory changes or
additions should be sent to Tony Kampf. In Europe,
dues can be remitted to Peter Davidson, National Museums of Scotland,
Edinburgh EH1 1JF, SCOTLAND.
make paying your dues easier (especially for non-US members),
a PayPal account has been established and installed on our
website. You can use your credit card or your own personal PayPal
account. Just go to our
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.
Remember to renew your membership.
If you are planning to pay dues at the Tucson
meeting, help Anna by filling out a membership application with your dues
payment. Do it beforehand and save time at the meeting!