Did You Know The Mineral Shigaite Was Discovered In Michigan’s Upper Peninsula?
Michigan is known as the birthplace of some of the most iconic inventions of all time, from automobiles to the modern guitar, to...the coney dog. All kidding aside it's also the place where a rare mineral, Shigaite, was discovered. In fact, it's so rare that it has only been found only in the following areas:
- Homer Mine, Michigan, United States
- Bengal Mine, Michigan, United States
- Iron Monarch open cut, South Australia, Australia
- Poudrette quarry, Quebec, Canada
- Ioi mine, Shiga Prefecture, Japan
- Wessels Mine, Northern Cape Province, South Africa
- N'Chwaning Mine, Northern Cape Province, South Africa
I came across a feature article that talked about how the Shigaite mineral was first discovered in the Upper Peninsula in the Bengal Mine in Stambaugh, Iron County, in 1951 and what the gem looks like.
The Shigaite gem is made up of small hexagonal crystals and can be yellow, orange, red, brown or black in color. Greenlund’s Shigaite sample is on display at Michigan Tech’s A.E. Seaman Mineral Museum.
Historically, Allegan and Kalamazoo counties have produced construction sand and gravel, as a graph shows all the minerals that have been produced in Michigan over the past decade.
It is interesting to point out that even though it was discovered here, it isn't recognized as the State Mineral. That isn't even a category, which is surprising considering the state gem, Isle Royale Greenstone, and the state stone, Petoskey is both recognized. Considering the discovery was made here, I really think they should add this to the list.