The Baldwin Place FarmTM
Established September 22nd 1849
Angle Plated - Boxwork Quartz
Geo-Speak... Bladed quartz textures formed in epithermal hot spring
- Visit our "Lost Cause" Mine TM to dig for these specimens... Information under Agritourism Services -
We're calling this NATURE's CERAMIC. We believe this is a naturally
created material like CERAMIC with the added druzy crystals.
The plated or bladed quartz is the most unusual and uncommon rock that we have found to date on our property.
Through much communications with professional geologists and much studying of our own, this material appears to be remnants
of an ancient epithermal geothermal or hot spring system and part of the systems boiling chamber. We found a few plated
quartz boulders on surface around 2010, thought was very cool, but never pursued what on earth it was. In
2012 we discovered some more alluvia and started our research. In the process, these rocks have led us to discover and
learn of an ancient fault which runs through our property and where these were created through. The fault and these
quartz are thought to be approximately 600 million years old or older than the Uwharrie formation in NC. As far as we
are aware and based on information gathered, this is the only current day "collectible" deposit of this type material
known and available in North Carolina. After much sample digging and trailing the material,
we finally hit a solid vein or outcrop of the material in December 2013.
These things are just weird and pictures do not do them justice. They are unlike any other quartz
that we know of and are composed of micro-crystallized quartz plates. The best explanation of their form that we agree
with is.... "These quartzes represent the filling in of the empty spaces between aggregates of pre-existing platy crystals
such as calcite or feldspar. After the empty spaces between the platy crystals were filled (if not completely filled,
a geode type of structure developed), the platy pre-existing crystals dissolved away and these quartzes resulted."
Also, many of ours are very layered, which we believe was caused by the repeated "turn on"/"turn off"
of the hot spring, thus building up layers of silica. In addition, many of our specimens have small crystal pockets
of clear, smoky and/or amethyst crystals.
For the geologically interested, our farm is in an interesting geo spot, and we believe the formation
events that led to this material is also interesting. Per what we understand from all geologists and their research,
our farm lies in the ancient Hyco Formation (600Ma +/-), and adjoining another ancient Aaron Formation (600
Ma +/-) and the ancient, but less ancient, Uwharrie Formation (540Ma +/-). It appears that the Virgilina Deformation
(570MA +/-) event, maybe created the fault and original structural rock folding (creating cracks), then the volcanism
from the younger Uwharrie formation played a role in our deposit through the fault and cracks, what we are seeing on the ground
as intersection point(s). The discovery of these quartz led to further evidence of the "inferred fault" mentioned
in the 1980's study in our area by Harris and Glover, as our quartz discovery coincidentally lies at a point on their "inferred
fault" line. Also, since we found an "in place" virgin vein of "faulted rock", we'd say the
fault isn't "inferred" any longer. The full context of their work "The Virgilina Deformation - Implications
of the Stratigraphic Correlation in the Carolina Slate Belt" by Charles W. Harris and Lynn Glover, III is available view
in following link:
"The Virgilina Deformation - Implications of Stratigraphic Correlation in the Carolina Slate Belt" - by Charles W. Harris
& Lynn Glover, III
First solid vein/outcrop uncovered
of the bladed quartz - December 2013
Next three pictures are magnified
photos of the Angle Plated Quartz micro-crystalline plates. Basically, entire rock is composed of this.
These things look like a very ugly shale,
until the sun lights the druzy sparkle up
We also find the boxes without the rock.
These may be what is known as polyhedral agate.
finding these are great for ornamental garden & landscaping and Bonsai - Suiseki - Viewing Stones
And more importantly, we like diggun em
- Happy after a dig... Tom Todaro , Bryan Davis, Shirley Green
... And some are kinda Purdy in
their own way
The quartz becomes white-er and sharper
with digging depth
Specimen in Rick Perkins' private collection
- Belmont, NC
Specimen below donated to Franklin Gem
and Mineral Museum - Franklin, NC
Specimen below donated to North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences - Raleigh, NC
Specimens below donated to Museum of North Carolina Minerals - National Park Service/Blue
Specimen below donated to individual's private collection - North Carolina
These things are like geodes, cause you never know what's inside until
you split it open, below.
Some surface collected pieces...
Sample of angle plated quartz surface finds... like a soup bowl
of "Ugly". Just kidding for angle plated lovers.
More surface collecting... trying to trend direction of subsurface