Vol. XXXIX, No. 9 --- September 2002

CFMS Newsletter

Table of Contents
President's Message
All American Awards
Calling All editors
CFMS Show in Placerville
CFMS Competition in Placerville
Tri-Federation Field Trip
The Rockhound Sticker
Insect Bites
Nominating Committee
CFMS Scholarship Honoree
Flash Danger
CFMS Show in Placerville

Presidents Message

By Jo Anna Ritchey, CFMS President
CFMS President

    I have been thinking communication, and how do we get information out to our members about governmental actions that affect us. The CFMS Bulletin is certainly one way of getting information about Public Lands, but should it be your only source? Perhaps your club should think about additional sources of information. May I suggest that you appoint someone in your club whose duty is to follow what the various departments of the government are doing and to report back to your members? The Bureau of Land Management has a web site (www.blm.gov) that contains a lot of information including the latest news as does other government agencies. So much is happening in the government that we need to know what they are doing on a current basis. When I started to think of this, I was told that one club already had something in place but the clubs I am associated with do not. My personal vision is for this person (committee?) to gather information, give a short report at meetings and short articles for your bulletins. I find that if the information gets to be too long your audience's attention tends to stray. Keep the articles and reports reasonable short and present them often.

    In regards to information, our Fall meeting will again be at the Holiday Inn in Visalia. The difference this year is that the date will be the first weekend in November (November 1, 2, 3, 2002). The initial notice was at the end of the Placerville Agenda and there is an official notice in this bulletin. Please set this weekend aside and join me in Visalia.

2001 All american Awards - Final Result

By Dot and Bob Beachler, CFMS Co-chairs

    The national results for the 2001 All American Awards program were announced at the AFMS meeting in Port Townsend, WA on July 20. A total of only fourteen clubs from five Federations had entered, and the CFMS led with five entries. Unfortunately, we did not lead with winners. The results listed are in alphabetical order except for high point winners.

    Large Clubs (100 or more)

  • Che Hanna Rock & Mineral Club, Eastern Fed. - Gold and High Point
  • Arlington Gem & Mineral Club, So. Central Fed. - Gold
  • Midwest Mineralogical & Lapidary Society, Midwest Fed. - Gold
  • Wisconsin Geological Society, Midwest Fed. - Gold
  • Contra Costa Mineral & Gem Society, CFMS - Silver (and CFMS Gold plaque)

     Small Clubs

  • NW Wisconsin Gem & Mineral Society, Midwest Fed. - Gold and High Point
  • Carmichael Gem & Mineral Society, CFMS - Bronze (and CFMS Bronze plaque)
  • Fossils For Fun Society, CFMS - Bronze ( and CFMS Silver plaque)
  • Gulf Coast Gem & Mineral Society, So. Central Fed. - Bronze
  • Los Alamos Geological Society, Rocky Mtn Fed. - Bronze
  • Roseville Rock Rollers, CFMS - Silver (and CFMS Silver)
  • Sutter Buttes Gem & Mineral Society, CFMS - Silver (and CFMS Silver)
  • Waco Gem & Mineral Club, So. Central Fed. - Silver
  • Williamson County Gem & Mineral Club, So. Central Fed. - Bronze

    We congratulate all of you who made the decision to enter - it obviously was worth the effort! You are entitled to use the phrase "An All American Club" on your newsletters and other publications.

    With September upon us, it is time to begin planning for this year's entry. At this time, we do not expect any changes in the entry forms, and the tentative CFMS submission date will be February 28, 2003. Pick an All American entry chairman, and start collecting the supporting information and documents you will need for a successful entry. It's not as difficult as it may seem! Last year's entry forms are available on the CFMS website (www.cfmsinc.org), and will be updated before the end of the year. Let's get some more large clubs to enter!

Calling All Editors

By Loretta Ogden, Bulletin Aids Chair.

     Now that the Editors Breakfast is over I must confess I was a little nervous being a novice Bulletin Aids Chair. I am sure many could tell by all the things and people I skipped, but as a result we were out of the hot room early and able to see more of the wonderful show the El Dorado Club put on for all of us. We had Carolyn Weinberger (AFMS Newsletter Editor) give us many words of wisdom in a most entertaining way. We also heard Shirley Leeson, Isabella Burns and Beverly Moreau.

     The thing I really learned from all this is how beneficial it is to compete. I read the newsletters, articles and the judge's comments and really felt like I got a lot out of it.

     It was a pleasure to be able to give out a few of the awards in person. I would like to encourage all of you editors and members who contribute to enter the contest next year. The rules and entrance forms will be in the October CFMS Newsletter. It will also be on the web at www.cfmsinc.org for your convenience.

     Remember next years show will be in Ventura and we should have relief from the heat of the summer with a few days at the beach. Plan to attend the show and the breakfast. It would be wonderful to see you pick up your award in person. Congratulations to all the entrants you are all winners.


"Treasurers Of The Sierra Nevada"
CFMS Gem Show & Convention 2002

By Jack Williams, 2002 Show Chairman

    The 63rd Annual Gem Show is now history! I am happy to report another very successful show to add to our history books.

    The show started out with a bang, so to speak. During the opening ceremonies a few wild mountain men captured a damsel from the customer line to hold as captive in a mock hold-up to steal the gold and gems of the show. But as luck would have it, our sheriffs showed up about then with their posse and a shoot-out followed which saved the day, the show then opened.

    The show attendance was 2500+, with nearly 60 dealers from far and near to pick from and a wide mix of items to meet almost everyone's interest.

    There were two buildings with exhibits, one competitive and one non-competitive; along with a special petrified wood display, a fluorescent booth, and the original 16 to 1 Mine with its 14+ pound gold nugget which you could hold.

    There was also gold panning and demonstrations in over a dozen activities to perk your interest. Along with a silent auction, youth activities, grab bags, geodes with free cutting, fun photo booth, fruit freeze and food booths on the grounds.

    The camping was tight but close to everything.

    The Awards Banquet and Editors Breakfast went well also. The only negative I can report was the weather, of which we had no control. With most days at 100 plus temperature, it WAS warm.

    The El Dorado Mineral & Gem Society is very thankful to all the neighboring clubs who came to our aid with volunteers to help set-up and take-down tables, cases and booths; walk security posts, man & monitor the camping lots, work the "Hot" food booth and all the demonstrators as well.

    I am proud of our CFMS family.

CFMS Competition Placerville

By Ruth Bailey, Rules Chairman

    We had a total of 37 entries in competition at the CFMS show in Placerville. Two persons were unable to enter their exhibits and had to cancel. Seven of the entries were in the single entry categories. Sixteen very capable and caring persons acted as judges and clerks for a lot of lovely entries.

    Following is a list of the trophies awarded:

      No.      Trophy      Name and Society
  • 13
  • 15Jr
  • 16
  • 17
  • 18
  • 21
  • 21Jr
  • 25
  • 28Jr
  • 30
     Petrified Wood and/or Wood Casts
     Carvings I
     Cabochons I
     Cabochons II
     Specialized Lapidary I
     Specialized Lapidary
     Specialized Techniques
     Educational II
     Educational IV
     Sweepstakes Award
     Gail Matthews - Santa Clara Vly. Gem & Min
     Kyle Houck - Glendora Gems
     Jay Paulson - Glendora Gems
     Cal Clason - Kern Co. Mineral
     Marion Roberts - Mother Lode Mineral Society
     Larry Bidwell - Glendora Gems
     Rebekah Wasson - Glendora Gems
     Jennifer Rhodes - Reno Gem & Mineral Society
     Chris McMaster - Glendora Gems
     Colleen McGann - Peninsula Gem & Geology
     Glendora Gems

    Plaques were given to the following persons for high scoring entries in Advanced Class.

  • Carving
  • Spheres
  • Educational
     Ron Covert
     Marion and Vivien Roberts
     Virginia Hansen Grafton
     Fresno Gem & Mineral
     Mother Lode Mineral Society
     North Orange County

     Winners of the Supplementary Trophy

  • Choate Jewelry Trophy
  • Beginning Gem Carvers Trophy
  • Intermediate Gem Carvers Trophy
     Norvie Enns
     Wayne Mills
     Ron Covert
     Reno Gem & Mineral Society
     Orcutt Mineral Society
     Fresno Gem & Mineral Society

    Congratulations to all of those who entered and to those who won awards. It is a wonderful addition to our exhibits and helps show our guests some of our great work

Tri-Federation Rockhound Rendezvous and Field Trip
To Texas Springs, NV

By Richard Pankey

    The Northwest, Rocky Mountain and California Federations of Mineralogical Societies have planned a Tri-Federation Rockhound Rendezvous and Field Trip to Texas Springs, NV, for Memorial Day Weekend 2003. The scheduled collecting trips will be on May 22nd thru 25th. Texas Springs Canyon is located approximately 25 miles southeast of Jackpot in the northeast corner of Nevada. Dean Richardson from the Rocky Mountain Federation has been collecting in this area for over 20 years and will guide us to several of the major collecting sites. The Texas Springs area is well known for spectacular pink agate limb casts, as well as, other agate and petrified wood. Although this area has been popular with rockhounds for many years, the larger, prized material can still be found for those who are willing to dig for it. Many small limb casts and other material can be found as float.

    In addition to the collecting trips we will have potluck dinners, happy hours, evening campfires, tailgate displays and a great rockhound get-together. Roads to campgrounds and collecting sites are typical desert roads. OK for motorhomes and trailers to campgrounds. This is a dry camping area: no services, no hook-ups. Motel rooms and full hook-up campgrounds are available in Jackpot.

    This will be a great opportunity for rockhounds from all over the west to meet one another to share stories and information about collecting in their home areas. Be sure to bring material from your favorite collecting sites to show and share. Come join us for a great rockhound time of collecting, fun and fellowship. Set aside this weekend and mark your calendar now. Details and a trip flier with directions to campsite will be published in your respective Federation Newsletter later this fall.
Dee Holland
Northwest Federation
Dean Richardson
Rocky Mt. Federation
Richard Pankey
California Federation

Attention Federation Directors and Bulletin Editors:

    Please announce this trip at your meetings and publish it in your newsletters to get the word out early so people can start planning for this special field trip and get together. A field trip announcement flier will be published in your December Federation Newsletter.

The Rockhound Sticker Is Now Available

By Richard Pankey

The Rockhound Sticker

    The Rockhound Sticker was introduced at the California Federation of Mineralogical Societies Show in Placerville, CA and at the combined American and Northwest Federation of Mineralogical Societies Show in Port Townsend, WA in July. The bright yellow sticker is 3 and a half inches in diameter with a diagonal black rock hammer with the word "ROCKHOUND" underneath. The sticker was designed and developed to be an easily recognizable symbol for rockhounds to identify one another. And it is also a great way to promote the rockhound hobby. The Rockhound Sticker will be showing up soon all around the country. In addition to all of the individual stickers that were sold, people from Maryland, Idaho, Washington, California, Texas, Oregon, Nevada and Utah purchased stickers to take home to their club members. Some clubs are getting the stickers to give or sell to their members. Other clubs are buying stickers to sell at their shows or rock swaps.

    The concept and development of the Rockhound Sticker was the outcome of a project of the CFMS Publicity/Public Relations Committee. It was designed to be distinctive and readily identifiable by everyone, whether or not they were a rockhound. Because of its simple design and bright yellow color it can be recognized easily and from a distance.

    The Rockhound Sticker is an easy way to identify oneself to others as a rockhound. It provides an easy way to recognize other rockhounds. The sticker not only promotes and publicizes rockhounding, it is a service to rockhounds to facilitate meeting one another. The sticker is an identifier for club members as well as unaffiliated rockhounds. It lets everyone know you are interested in collecting rocks, minerals, or fossils and you are willing to discuss collecting, to share rockhounding experiences and to help other rockhounds. It tells others that you are a rockhound friend.

    This sticker is not intended to replace club or federation badges, it compliments them by saying "I am a Rockhound". No other words or mottoes are necessary. In short, everyone, rockhound or not, will recognize it, thus widening your circle of friends and helping you to learn of new locations and ideas.

    Use it anywhere and in anyway to attract the attention of other rockhounds. Use it to advertise that a rockhound is present and willing to talk about rocks, minerals, fossils and related subjects. Look for the sticker where rockhounds may be present, such as campgrounds, potential collecting areas, craft shows, etc. p align=justify>         The stickers sell for 50 cents each for 1 to 59 stickers (minimum order - 10 stickers) or 30 cents each for quantities of 100 or more; price includes postage and handling. Frank will accept checks or credit cards. When ordering make check payable to: ROCKY FIVE. To order stickers, contact:

      Frank Mullaney
      5705 Begonia Dr.
      San Jose, CA 95124-6535
      Ph.: 408-266-1791
      E-mail: rockyfiv@aol.com

          Promote rockhounding. Proudly display your Rockhound Sticker.

The Rockhound Sticker


Insect Bites

By Chuck McKie CFMS Safety Chairman, 2002
City of Phoenix Source 1996-97 Last modified 06/20/2000 00:10:24

    Insect bites and stings are common, and most are considered minor. It is only when the insect is poisonous or when the patient has an allergic reaction and runs the risk of developing anaphylactic shock that the situation becomes an emergency. Even under those conditions, accurate diagnosis and prompt treatment can save lives and prevent permanent tissue damage.

    The normal reaction to an insect sting is a sharp, stinging pain followed by an itchy, swollen, painful raised area. The swelling may be there for several days but usually goes away within 24 hours. Local reactions are rarely serious or life-threatening and can be treated with cold compresses.

    However, there are some people who have allergic reactions to "normal" insect stings. Approximately 50 people die each year in the United States from insect stings. This is more than all other bites combined including snake bites. Thousands of people are allergic to bee, wasp, and hornet stings. Insect stings can be deadly for those people, on the average, within 10 minutes of the sting but almost always within the first hour.

    The stinging insects that most commonly cause allergic reactions belong to a group of the hymenoptera, the insects with membranous wings. These include bees, wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets. Stings from wasps and bees are the most common.

Black Widow Spider

     The black widow is a spider with a shiny black body, thin legs and an hourglass shaped red/white mark on its abdomen. The female is much larger than the male and is one of the largest spiders in the United States. Males generally do not bite. Females bite only when hungry, agitated or protecting the egg sac. The black widow is not aggressive. They are usually found in dry, secluded, dimly lit areas. More than 80 percent of all bite victims are adult men.

    Black widow spider bites are the leading cause of death from spider bites in the United States. The venom is 14 times more toxic than rattlesnake venom. It is a neurotoxin that causes little local reaction but does cause pain and spasms in the larger muscle groups of the body within 30 minutes to three hours. Severe bites can cause respiratory failure, coma and death. Those at the highest risk are children under age 16, the elderly, people with chronic illness and people with high blood pressure.

Signs and symptoms of a black widow spider bite:
  1. A pinprick sensation at the bite site, becoming a dull ache within 30 to 40 minutes
  2. Pain and spasms in the shoulders, back, chest, and abdominal muscles within 30 minutes to three hours
  3. Rigid, board like abdomen
  4. Restlessness and anxiety
  5. Fever
  6. Rash
  7. Headache
  8. Vomiting and nausea
  9. Flushing
  10. Sweating
  11. Grimacing.
The symptoms usually last 24 to 48 hours.
  1. Treat for shock
  2. Apply a cold compress but do not apply ice
  3. Transport to hospital as quickly as possible

Brown Spiders

    There are two types of brown spiders or brown recluse spiders in Arizona. They often are called violin spiders because of the characteristic "violin-shaped" marking on the upper back. They are generally brown but can range in color from yellow to dark brown. They are timid with webs in dry undisturbed areas. The Arizona species is not the same as the brown recluse spider in the Midwest.

    The bite of the brown spider is a serious medical condition. The bite is non healing and causes tissue death. Sometimes surgery is necessary. The bite causes only a mild stinging sensation if any at all. Victims often are unaware they have been bitten.

Several hours after the bite, the following signs and symptoms begin to result:
  1. A small white area appears surrounded by a margin of redness which may produce a mild itching pain.
  2. A blister appears surrounded by mild swelling and redness.
  3. A "bulls-eye" or "target" lesion develops
  4. There may be fever, chills, rash, hives, nausea and pain in the joints over the next few days.

    The target lesion will enlarge over the next few days and produce extensive tissue death. There is no antivenom. The lesion will have to be soaked in antiseptic and possibly antibiotics. Surgery may be necessary to cut out the dead tissue.


    There are many species of scorpions found in Arizona but only one is potentially lethal. This is the bark scorpion. It is one of the smaller species being one to one and a half inches long. It prefers places dark and cool, wood piles, palm trees, decorative bark. The severity of the sting depends on the amount of venom injected but scorpion stings can be fatal. Ninety percent of all scorpion stings occur on the hands.

    The lethal scorpion is very slender and streamlined. It is straw-colored or nearly opaque, small, less than two inches long.

Signs and symptoms of scorpion stings include:
  1. Sharp pain at the site of the sting
  2. Swelling that gradually spreads
  3. Discoloration
  4. Nausea and vomiting
  5. Restlessness
  6. Drooling
  7. Poor coordination
  8. Incontinence
  9. Seizures
  1. Apply ice to relieve the pain of the sting
  2. Be sure the victim's airway stays clear
  3. Transport to a hospital. A specific antivenom is available.

Nominating Committee Report
Presenting the Slate for the November Election

By Grant & Toni Ewers
Nominating Committee Chair

    The CFMS Nominating Committee submits the following people as officers of the California Federation of Mineralogical Societies for the year 2003:

President:  Jack Williams

First Vice President:  Lois Allmen

Second Vice President:  Marion Roberts

Treasurer:  Richard Pankey and Earl Liston

Secretary:  Colleen McGann

    Nominations from the floor will be accepted by President Ritchey at the Fall Meeting In Visalia

CFMS Scholarship Honoree Nominations Due

By Beverly C. Moreau

     November 1, 2002 is the deadline for any CFMS club to submit the name of a deserving person to be considered as a CFMS Scholarship Honoree.The CFMS Scholarship Honoree should be someone who has been involved in promoting the educational aspects of the hobby. This is a wonderful way to reward someone who has worked toward educating people in the area of gems and minerals, lapidary, or earth sciences.

    Each Honoree selected will name the college or university of his/her choice and then, with the advice of the school, assist in selecting a student majoring in the Earth Sciences or Lapidary Arts to receive a $2,000 scholarship from CFMS. The student must meet certain criteria, such as being registered as a junior or senior in the Fall semester when the scholarship is paid, as well as meet scholastic standards.

    The Honorees selected, as well as their students, will be given the opportunity to attend the CFMS Awards Banquet at next year's Convention/Show in Ventura. At that time, the Honorees will each receive a plaque to commemorate their being so honored, and their students will be introduced to the banquet attendees and tell a little bit about their field of studies and educational goals..

    The Scholarship Committee will consider the Honoree nominations just prior to the Directors' Meeting in Visalia, and the announcement of their selections will be made during the Directors' Meeting .Please send information about your nominee and his or accomplishments to me as soon as possible before November 1. Thanks for your assistance in this important aspect of our Federation.

      Beverly C. Moreau, Chair
      CFMS Scholarship Committee
      3113 Topaz Lane, #A
      Fullerton, CA 92831-2374

Flash Danger Danger Danger --- Static Electricity Can Kill You

By Chuck McKie, CFMS Safety Chairman 2002

    This is NOT a myth!

    I just saw a news flash on television. A car at a gasoline station burst into flames. This news flash said billions of cars are gassed up yearly safely but several dozen have caught fire. I don't wish to be in the minority to die in a fire.

    The reason for the fires. Static electricity. It has been mostly ladies because they place the hose nozzle into the gas tank, then return to their car seat - for what ever reason. When they slide across the seat to get out of the car, static electricity is generated up to thousands of volts.

    And when they touch the nozzle, the static discharges a spark which ignites the gas fumes. The solution is simple, touch some metal on your car before you touch the nozzel!

     I drove the Seattle Transit City buses for ten years. When I would slide on the seat, the static would build up until I touched someone or some metal. The spark would jump about 3 inches and my passengers would jump. I did also until I learned to touch some metal with my hand before I touched anybody. And by holding onto some metal as I moved I could avoid the static.

    Touch your keys in the ignition, the metal door handle, but not the nozzle, until you have discharged the built up electricity. Some people just don't get back into their car until after they finished gassing up. One other thing, that charge will go through your clothes also.

My Trip To The CFMS Show, Placerville

By Teresa Masters
(For those of you who might have missed this on the CFMS Website,
here is an article on the CFMS Show in Placerville. Bev. Moreau)

     An eventful 1100 mile round trip from 62-72 degree Oceanside up the 5 Freeway, the inland route north to 100-112 degree Placerville, in a 4 cylinder van that overheated! Left that vehicle in the pay parking lot at the Bakersfield Airport and rented from Avis.

    We reached Placerville somewhat later than planned but had to set up two cases that Thursday night, as this was a three day show. Due to the extreme heat wave, electricity was at a premium and fans replaced air conditioning.

    The cases were outstanding in both the judged building as well as the non-judged building. Yes, they both filled individual buildings, and there was much to ooh and ah over. A wonderful thing happened in the judged competition. Many of the young students from Glendora School District entered their cases and once again won quite a few awards. I mentioned a month or so ago that this program was in jeopardy, and here they win wonderful recognition for their School District, their instructor, and themselves. These are 13-17 year old girls and boys.

    Now the show itself. Jack Williams Show Chairman, managed to find the best meld of dealers and variety of products and materials I have yet seen, and I include commercial shows in this evaluation. There were locals as well as those who traveled quite some distance who supported rock and mineral clubs with their presence. There was an excellent display of Fluorescent material, and the youngsters were audibly in awe of them.

    There was nothing that was not rock, mineral, lapidary, jewelry related. Not a flea market crafty item at all.Anyone who came for our hobby/business material found what they wanted. Consideration was given to the number of dealers with same items-beads, fossils,findings,tools-in competition with one another. Dealer selection was such that there was no unreasonable clash for attention. Very well done.Business seemed to be brisk.

    For myself, I was shown an unusual fine silver piece, was told where it was being sold, and went over and made several different purchases from that dealer. Those who know each other from attending shows, etc. willingly share information by word of mouth. I love this aspect, and so do the dealers.

    Some of the dealers I recognized there were Helen Goga, Wire Artists Group, with her wonderful publication and lovely daughter Becky; Dale Nichols, Wire Artist;, Chris Rose, High Desert Mines; Kenneth Lee the ingenious tool designer; Corrine Gurry, the Wire Wizard Lady; and Joyce and Hugh, J&J Gemstones. I apologize for those I cannot remember at this time.

    There were demonstrators galore, silent auction, gold panning, fun stuff for youths, geodes selected and then sliced without further charge. These wonderful folks, and the club volunteers, really deserve big thanks. They were all set up outside under easy-ups, shelter only from the sun, not the heat. I saw a few misters with fans behind them directing the mist at those giving their all for the pleasure of attendees. I must admit to standing in front of the mister several times.

    There were two extremely well attended booths there. First was a 14-plus pound Gold Nugget dug out in recent years at the Original Sixteen to One Mine. It sat on a purple velvet pillow on open display and was put into the hands of anyone that cared to hold it. Believe me I did, and yes, it was rather heavy. To say the least, it is a magnificent specimen and an honor to be able to hold. Mike Miller,the mine owner spoke at the CFMS Meeting. The mine is offering tours, more information can be obtained from two web sites, or www,origsix,com. Sounds like a great field trip.

     The second overwhelmed booth was outside under an easy-up and was Gunther's Fruit Freezes. This vendor was direct from heaven.They offered four .flavors; strawberry, lemon, orange, and strawberry-banana. This was the closest to the delight of my youth, and whenever I can { find the real stuff, Italian Ices.When summer came along, the Italian Bakeries made real fruit Lemon Ices. They were sold in pleated paper cups for one and two cents. (One to two dollars last time I was in New York) The ones sold in Placerville were three and five dollars- worth every cent.

     Deep thanks to the Host Club, The Eldorado Gem and Mineral Society, for the excellent show, the great humor despite the heat, and to the CFMS for its sponsorship.The show's opening ceremonies included a shoot-out by the Outlaw Sheriffs, an unexpected surprise for all. A great weekend was had by all.