A Gem of a Read

Idaho is known as the “Gem State” because virtually every type of gemstone in the world is found here – including the rare star garnet, which is found in only two places on Earth (the Himalayas being the other). But I would guess that most of us know little beyond gems other than the ones we see at the jewelry store. Here are a few resources to boost your knowledge – and some might even give you the inspiration to go exploring on your own.



Color Encyclopedia of Gemstones by Joel E. Arum

The Gem and Mineral Collector’s Guide to Idaho by Lanny R. Ream

Gems: A Lively Guide for the Casual Collector by Daniel J. Dennis

Gems and Crystals from the American Museum of Natural History by Anna S. Sofianides

Gemstones of the World by Walter Schumann

Idaho Gold and Gems Maps: Then and Now

Jewels: A Secret History by Victoria Finlay

Minerals and Gems by John Sampson White

Pan for Gold and Gems at Potential Highway/Stream Crossings in Idaho by David Walker

Rock and Gem by Ra Bonewitz

The Rockhound and Prospector’s Bible: A Reference and Study Guide to Rocks, Minerals, Gemstones, and Prospecting by L. J. Ettinger

The Treasure Hunter’s Gem & Mineral Guides to the U.S.A.. Volume 1, Northwest States: Where & How to Dig, Pan, and Mine Your Own Gems & Minerals by Kathy J. Rygle



American Federation of Mineralogical Societies

The British Monarchy: Crown Jewels Gallery

Idaho Department of Lands: Gemstone Guide

International Colored Gemstone Association

Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History: Department of Mineral Sciences

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