Berns Quartz

James Di Loreto, Smithsonian Institution
October 27, 2021
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Slab of quartz on display
James Di Loreto, Smithsonian Institution
The Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History unveiled a stunning slab of quartz crystals today, Oct. 27. This is among the largest examples of quartz specimens on display in any museum in America. At 7 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.
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