This beautiful stone comes from the Brush Wellman Beryllium Mine west of Delta, Utah.
Tiffany Stone comprises of several minerals including opalized fluorite (purple, blue and white colors), dolomite, manganese oxides (black coloration). Tiffany Stone is mined for the bertrandite it contains.
Bertrandite contains the mineral beryllium. The Tiffany Stone, once processed produces only about 1-2 percent of the beryllium for which it is mined.
Beryllium is lighter than aluminum and stronger than steel and is often alloyed with other metals.
This material was once relatively inexpensive and fairly easy to obtain. We first saw this material about 20 years ago at an old rock shop south of Tucson and we decided we had to have some.
About the same time the material was gaining in popularity. As the demand for the material was increasing the Brush Wellman Beryllium Mine closed its operations to collectors making it difficult to obtain and causing the price of the material to skyrocket.
Fortunately we were able to obtain some very nice “Old Stock” before the cost for the high quality material became prohibitive.
Since we live quite close to the mine location we still come across some of this material at the local rock shops however it’s difficult to find really nice material.