Chicago Rocks & Minerals Society, Chicago, IL
Chicago Rocks and Minerals Society
Chicago Rocks and Minerals Society
Chicago Rocks and Minerals Society
Chicago Rocks and Minerals Society
Chicago Rocks and Minerals Society

Our Speaker for April 14, 2018 is Chris Clemens,
President, Midwest Chapter of the Fluorescent Mineral Society

Chris Clemens, President, Midwest Chapter of the Fluorescent Mineral Society

Expect a glowing presentation! Chris will explain the phenomenon of fluorescence, including its cause and why some rocks glow under ultraviolet (UV) light. He will show examples of beautiful fluorescent minerals from around the world, the US and notable locations in the Midwest. Chris will bring a couple of UV lamps with him and briefly discuss new innovations in the UV field lamp technology and resources available to the fluorescent mineral collector. Everyone is invited to bring rocks to the meeting if they'd like and Chris will check them for fluorescence.

President of the Midwest Chapter of the Fluorescent Mineral Society, Chris Clemens is a research scientist by education and profession. His work currently focuses on the use of targeted fluorescent dyes to label and identify cancer biomarkers in malignant cells. Chris has been interested in rocks, minerals and fossils since childhood. His primary interests include fluorescent minerals, mineral photography, the collection of fine minerals from Midwest locations and local geology. Chris moved to Crown Point, Indiana, four years ago after having lived in Utah for 30 years. He is a past president of the Calumet Gem & Mineral Society in Northwestern Indiana.

The Fluorescent Mineral Society is an international organization of professional mineralogists, gemologists, amateur collectors, and others who study and collect fluorescent minerals. Their mission is to bring together people who are interested in fluorescent minerals, and to introduce the public to the hobby of fluorescent mineral collecting. They share knowledge and experience in collecting, identifying, and displaying minerals which exhibit various forms of luminescence including fluorescence, phosphorescence, triboluminescence, and thermoluminescence.

Our Speaker for May 12, 2018 is CRMS member Lyle Backus

CRMS member Lyle Backus will present a program on the most magical and mysterious of gems - opals.

Our Speaker for June 9, 2018 is Paul Mayer,
Collections Manager from the Field Museum

Paul Mayer, Fossil Invertebrate Collections Manager from the Field Museum will present a talk on the 430 million year old Silurian reefs of Northeastern Illinois including common fossils found in the Chicago area.

Featured Specimen
— Purple Fluorite —
with Purple Zoning

Purple Fluorite with Purple Zoning

— from Hardin County, IL —

Newsletter Contributions

Our newsletter, The Pick And Dop Stick, is always looking for new submissions. If you have an article you would like to submit to the newsletter, a news item, pictures of one of your rockhound adventures, or another contribution, please send it to We welcome all kinds of contributions!

ALAA-American Lands Access Association

The Latest from the ALAA

The ALAA (American Lands Access Association) is the lobbying arm of the American Federation, working on behalf of rockhounds to keep public lands open and accessible to all, including the elderly and handicapped. Click here to read a few of the hot topics they are working on right now for rockhounds like us. For more information about who they are, a full list of what they are working on on, to become a member, or get involved, visit their website at:

Geo Juniors are having thier own meetings!

The Geo Juniors are having their own meetings. The kids' meetings are from 6:15 pm to 7:15 pm on the same evenings as our regular meetings, the second Saturday of the month. These budding rockhounds will be learning all about what it take to become one. At the meetings, they will be working on badge work, helping to design and build their website,, related crafts and a host of other things to help them become the newest generation of rockhounds.

Talk About Digging Things Up!

The club has recently come across old newsletters. We are in the process of digitizing them for posterity's sake. I thought it would be great to post the very first newsletter of our club here for all to see. This newsletter was originally mimeographed (remember the smell of mimeographed pages!) and later zeroxed. With some time and effort, it was scanned in and cleaned up. Click here to see what was going on in the club in October of 1946.

Check out our Calendar of Events for more great rockhound events!

"Like" us on

Click here to see
our Facebook page.

I would like to give a special
"thanks" to Rod Piechowski
for his help photographing
many of the images in this site.

Our Purpose

The objectives of the Chicago Rocks & Minerals Society are to study, disseminate, and promote interest in the earth sciences - emphasizing the various aspects of geology, paleontology, paleobotany, mineralogy and the lapidary arts, as well as to collect minerals, fossil specimens, and cutting material. Plus, we tend to socialize a lot, entertain ourselves with fabulous speakers and eat great snacks!

Meetings are at 7:30 p.m. on the second Saturday
of the month (except July and August) at:

St. Peter's United Church of Christ
8013 Laramie Ave.
Skokie, IL 60077
(At Laramie and Oakton - across from
the Skokie Public Library)

If you would like more information about our club,
please contact us at
or call Jeanine at 312-623-1554.

For more information about our Meetings
and their Location, please click here.

Chicago Rocks & Minerals Society is a not-for-profit organization.

Other News

This Month in The Pick and Dop Stick

  • Read "Fluorescence in Minerals" Get some background into this phenomenon before Chris Clemens speaks at our next meeting.
  • Learn more about "Fluorescent Uranium Glass".
  • See the notes on "Atomic Faceting" from the U. S. Geological Survey.
  • In Bench Tips, learn how to turn your pliers into no-mar pliers. Also find links to different sites for patina recipes and supplies.