Berns Quartz

October 27, 2021 – Indefinitely
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The museum’s new natural quartz weighs a whopping 8,000 pounds. It was found in an Arkansas mine in 2016, making it a quintessential American mineral specimen. James Di Loreto, Smithsonian Institution

National Museum of Natural History
10th St. & Constitution Ave., NW
Washington, DC

Ground Floor, North Entrance

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At seven feet tall and more than 8,000 pounds in weight, the gigantic cluster of thousands of sparkling crystals stands in the front gallery, adjacent to the museum’s historic north entrance. The quartz was discovered at the Coleman Mine in Arkansas’ Ouachita Mountains in 2016. It is named the Berns Quartz in recognition of Michael and Tricia Berns, whose philanthropic support brought the specimen into the museum’s collection.