Formations Of Quartz Crystals
Quartz crystal is a natural, durable mineral that occurs in many different varieties. The prismatic, transparent, virtreous, and elongate from Arkansas are the best know quartz crystals. World-renowned for crystal production, in 1976 quartz crystal became the official State Mineral of Arkansas.
The quartz crystals located in the Ouachita Mountains of Arkansas have been well known since humans first occupied the area. Early Native Americans chipped the quartz crystals into sharp points for use as weapons. The main area where quartz crystal was initially sourced was the Crystal Mountains in Montgomery County. Crystal was also being mined from Garland and Saline County by the 1890’s. Early miners had few legal hurdles or restrictions on their mining operations, even though most of the crystal deposits were on private or Government land.
The largest quartz crystal veins show up in Paleozoic shales and sandstones, with those found in shale having more milky deposits with less of the well-developed clear crystals. Those found in sandstone can be in sheets, stockworks, or veins. Sandstone deposits usually have less quartz overall, but have clear crystal in higher percentages compared to shale.
The Crystal and Blakely Mountain Sandstones are where most of the collectible type quartz crystal in obtained. However, some very attractive quartz crystal can be found in any of the Paleozoic units.
Quartz crystals have been attractive to humans from the earliest man to modern times. With their intricate beauty and variety the quartz crystals of Arkansas will continue to provide excitement well into our future.