June 19th , 2013 10:00 am Leave a comment

Readers mine for gems, this time outside the cover of a book


Youngsters in the Summer Reading Program at the Elizabethton/Carter County Public Library found all different kinds of treasure Tuesday morning.

Photo by Brandon HicksJewel McGrath is all smiles at the prospect of finding some gems of her own.

Photo by Brandon Hicks
Jewel McGrath is all smiles at the prospect of finding some gems of her own.

While thousands of literary gems can be found every day at the library, Tuesday’s treasures weren’t found in books or stories.They were the gems uncovered in the portable mining flume from Cooper’s Gem Mine from Blountville.

Each child who wanted to mine for gems were given a mining sieve filled with rocks, dirt and gems, then submerged their trays in the water to remove the dirt and uncover which of the items were standard rocks and which were special gems.

Some of the gems they could find included emeralds, garnets, amethyst, peacock ore, pyrite — also known as fool’s gold, blue apatite, teal apatite, green aventurine and orange aventurine.

Four-year-old Lillian Andrews was excited after her gem-mining stint.

“I got 29 rocks and a piece of gold,” Lillian said. “The best part was getting to stick my hands in the water. I had fun.”

Lillian said she plans to take her gems home and put them in a special place.

“I have a treasure chest and I am going to put them in there,” she explained.


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