Today is Sunday, July 24, 2016

Welcome to the Northwest Arkansas Gem & Mineral Society Website

The Northwest Arkansas Gem and Mineral Society is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting Earth Sciences and Lapidary Arts, based in Siloam Springs, Arkansas.

Our Mission

The Northwest Arkansas Gem and Mineral Society is a group of like-minded enthusiasts dedicated to learning, sharing and promoting earth science, geology, mineralogy, paleontology, lapidary arts and associated subjects. It is composed of individuals who have chosen these as an area of primary interest and are willing to use their experience, talent, knowledge and efforts to promote the Society's mission.

Our Meetings

We hold a monthly general meeting at our Clubhouse on the 4th Tuesday of each month from 7PM to 9PM. Doors open at 6:30PM. We love hosting visitors and guests, including children, and we encourage everyone with an interest in gems and minerals to join us at one our monthly meetings.

Our Membership

The Society is open to all persons with rockhound "fever." We offer something for every family member and our activities as rockhounds encourage family fun and participation. Our membership includes children, high school and college students, working adults and retirees.

Membership Information

Our Location


Our club is based in Siloam Springs, Arkansas. Our service area encompasses the Greater Northwest Arkansas metro corridor, representing the cities of Bella Vista, Bentonville, Rogers, Lowell, Springdale, Fayetteville, Siloam Springs and Gentry, as well as counties in Southeastern Oklahoma.


Siloam Springs, Arkansas

GPS 36.206926, -94.553682

(501) 420-3612 (voicemail and text)

Email Contact


Our meetings are held on the fourth Tuesday of each month.


7:00 PM - 9:00 PM

Subscribers receive email notifications of our field trips, our events and other information of interest to rockhounds.

Sitewide Keyword Search
Mountain Home Arkansas' Ozark Earth Science Club President Cathy Doyle and Sharon Waddell on the Talk Of The Town radio show, KTLO-FM, 97.9.


Please join us for our July presentation at the NWAGMS clubhouse on Tuesday, July 26 at 7:00pm. I think you'll really enjoy it. Our guest speaker this month is Robert Beauford, PhD in Space and Planetary Science, Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences, University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. (Astrogeology).

Dr. Beauford's numerous other works include Co-editor of Meteorite Magazine (2010 to present), Curator of Meteorites at the University of Arkansas (2010 to present), and he is a Jeweler and Lapidary worker who has individually handcrafted over 10,000 pieces of silver and gold jewelry. He is also the owner of the MUSE Gallery in Eureka Springs, Arkansas where many of his interests are on display, including his metalsmithing, jewelry work and art.

Dr. Beauford is involved in numerous education and public outreach projects, including a book devoted to geology of the Ozark Plateaus region and a website built to provide an education and research resource for people interested in impact craters in the United States, www.impactcraters.us. He is the author of Turquoise - Stone of Heaven, ISBN 9781301199150, and has written dozens of research articles for Meteorite Magazine and other journals. His curriculum vitae can be found on his website at www.robertbeauford.net.

Doors open at 6:30pm with the presentation scheduled to begin at 7:00pm. More information about our meetings and a map to the clubhouse in Siloam Springs can be found on this website.

Executive Officer Nomination:

Curt Lafferty has been nominated to fill the vacant office of Vice-President.


Pictured: Ms. Caitlin Ahrens

Minerals of Mars

Our guest speaker for May was Ms. Caitlin Ahrens from the W.M. Keck Laboratory for Space Simulation, a research laboratory in the Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Science at the University of Arkansas.

Ms. Ahrens presented a wide range of topics related to the surface environment on Mars, the geological formations recently discovered by planetary rovers, high resolution photography and investigations into the possibility of water on Mars. Her presentation included Mars topography photos from HIRISE, a camera on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Other items included a rare mineral sample of a basaltic olivine from the Red Planet ejected from Mars by the impact of an asteroid falling to earth on July 18, 2011 in a remote rocky desert region southwest of Tissint, Morocco.

upcoming events

Fall Swap Dates

The Northwest Arkansas Gem and Mineral Societies' Annual Fall Swap will be held on September 10-11, the weekend following Labor Day. A workday to prepare for the Fall Swap has been set for Saturday, August 27.

The 29th Annual World Championship Quartz Crystal Dig is scheduled for October 7-8, 2016. Amateur diggers compete for $1500 in prizes. There are two categories for awards: Best Cluster & Best Point. Awards will be presented Saturday evening. Two days of digging. Keep all you dig!

The dig is hosted by the Mount Ida Area Chamber of Commerce and held in conjunction with the Quartz, Quiltz and Craftz Festival at the Montgomery County Fairgrounds in Mount Ida, Arkansas.

More information can be found on the World Championship Quartz Crystal Dig Facebook page.

Fellow Rock Hounds and RMFMS Members,

After a lot of hard work the long range planning committee has finally delivered and at the convention in Wichita, KS, it was approved. The revised Operating Procedures. Here is a copy of those OP's. I have sent them via PDF file as well as Word. I am sure everyone will be able to open at least one of these.

This will also be on our website for everyone as soon as I get the copy to Mr. Jim McGarvey our webmaster for RMFMS. You will also find on our website the By-Laws and the Article of Incorporation if you need a copy you may print them off.

You will be receiving my Secretaries report on the convention in just a few days and that too will be on our website.

Thank You,

Liz Thomas
RMFMS Secretary

PDF File   Microsoft Word Document

Clubs and Club Members,

Here is the Secretaries report from the Wichita convention which was held in July of this year. This is the Executive Board meeting as well as the Delegates Meeting one is Word and the other is PDF so everyone can open one of them I am sure. If anyone in your club would like a copy by all means make one for them or direct them to the RMFMS web site and it will be there. Thank you so much for a wonderful year. Hope to see everyone one in Albuquerque New Mexico in March of this next year. Be watching for all the details.

Thank You

Liz Thomas

Secretary RMFMS

2016 RMFMS Secretaries Delegates Meeting2016 RMFMS Secretaries Exe. meeting

SuRveys and questionaires

I'd like to ask NWA Gem and Mineral Society members to take a few minutes to participate in an online survey. This is a short questionnaire designed to establish statistical baselines and gain the perspective of the membership in general. This survey should only take 5 - 7 minutes to complete.

This survey is anonymous and all answers you provide will be consolidated with the responses of other participants. The information will be used to establish some statistical baselines, will serve as an assessment of members' satisfaction with our current programs, and will be a guide for improvements and future planning in general.

Begin The Survey >>>

latest article
May 18, 2016, 2:32 AM
I’m late! I’m late! For a very important date! No it’s not to see Alice in Wonderland, it is for getting May’s installment of this old shop in.
NEWSLETTERs and e-bulletins

Several times each month the Northwest Arkansas Gem and Mineral Society publishes an e-Bulletin for distribution through email.

The e-Bulletin contains club-related news, details about scheduled programs such as presentations and field trips, and other items of interest to rockhounds everywhere.

Current and past issues can be found here.

gem and mineral shows
special feature
Photos from a trip to see the Wichita Gem and Mineral Society 63rd Annual show, "Nature's Treasures".
This gallery displays the collection of Paul Otto, winner of six AFMS National Awards for Mineral Display.
A portfolio displaying selections from the Dean Shafer Collection.
latest photo GALLERy
Jul 11, 2016, 3:36 AM
Photo Gallery: The Tulsa Rock and Mineral Society's 2016 Gem, Mineral And Jewelry Show.
Tri-States Minerals

2016 Fall Swap and Auction - September 10-11, 2016

One of the great pleasures in the gem and lapidary world is visiting clubs during their annual shows.

The 2016 Northwest Arkansas Gem and Mineral Society Annual Fall Swap and Auction will feature a wide range of rocks, minerals, gems, demonstrations, handcrafted jewelry, fossils and supplies. Whether you’re looking for a bargain or just interested to see what lapidaries are doing, you can be sure of a warm welcome.

If you are already a lapidary club member in our area, why not organize an official club outing to our event and really make a day of it?

If you’re just browsing and not a member of any club, this is a terrific way to discover a little bit about earth science, geology and lapidary. There will be many subject matter experts on hand to answer your questions.

Technology for Rockhounds

This website is mobile-device friendly. It displays equally well on high definition televisions, desktop monitors, tablets, smartphones and wearable devices..

Rockhound Ephemera Project

Ephemera - printed materials with a short life span, such as newsletters, brochures, catalogs, ads, flyers, cards, stickers, posters and more - is a unique media whose content and graphic richness are a historical and cultural resource.

Wolfram|Alpha Computational Knowledge Engine

Wolfram|Alpha introduces a fundamentally new way to get knowledge and answers — not by searching the web, but by doing dynamic computations based on a vast collection of built-in data, algorithms, and methods.

An interactive map showing mineral deposit names, locations, commodity and deposit descriptions known to the US Geological Survey in the continental United States.

Pick Of The Week: How Do You Say That Word?

Alphabetically listed audio files with the correct pronunciations of minerals and terms.

This is part of a course offered at the College of Southern Nevada as Geology 115, Introduction to Gemology, and is an ongoing offering from their Distance Education Department via the internet for anyone, regardless of their geographic location.

Introduction to Gemology: Barbara Smigel, PhD, GG

Q: Is it possible to identify the species of petrified wood?

A: The best method to identify mineralized woody material is by way of photomicrographs. Try contacting the proprietor of The Virtual Petrified Wood Museum at http://petrifiedwoodmuseum.org/. Probably he can help you out with at least a genera-level identification, if not outright species determination.

Colorado School of Mines

Geology Museum, Colorado School of Mines

Commonly known as “water agates”, or "water-stones”, some quartz and agate nodules can contain large amounts of ancient water.