Virtual Museum ID: 19-AME997
Pyrite is a common iron sulphide mineral found in many different geological settings. It has a brassy-yellow metallic colour that has caused many people to mistake it for gold, giving it the name “Fool’s gold”. Pyrite and gold can be quite easily distinguished from one another: pyrite is less yellow and much lighter and harder than gold, which can be scratched with a pocket knife. Pyrite often forms perfect cubes, which can grow to quite large sizes, because of its crystal structure. The word pyrite comes from the Greek word ‘pyr’ meaning fire, because it will spark if hit with other metal or stone objects.
Chalcopyrite is the most common ore mineral for copper and is a sulphide of iron and copper. Chalco comes from the Greek word chalko, meaning copper. Chalcopyrite is commonly found in sulphide deposits in many ore-forming environments. A characteristic deep brass yellow colour and iridescent green-to-purple weathering surfaces distinguish chalcopyrite from gold and sulphides such as pyrite.
This sample is from the Goldstream River area of southern Vancouver Island. Goldstream is mainly known for the placer gold deposits that occur in the river gravels. This sample is from the surrounding slate and schist host rocks. Quartz veins in the host rocks contain chalcopyrite and pyrite (as seen in this sample) and sometimes gold. As the veins are weathered out of the host rock, gold is freed and settles in gravels in the river bottom.
The information listed below relates to the current holding location or collection that the sample is from, and whether the item is viewable at that location or is part of a private collection. Coordinates are given as guides, and we remind you that collecting specimens from these locations is not allowed. Caution is advised visiting such sites and Below BC assumes no responsibility for any injuries or trespassing charges that may occur as a result of the viewer entering these sites.
Original Collection:Association for Mineral Exploration (AME)
Virtual Museum ID:19-AME997
Date Added to VM:2018-02-15
Sample Origin:Goldstream River, B.C.
Datum:10 (NAD 83)
Primary Features:Pyrite Chalcopyrite
Primary Mineral Formula:CuFeS2, FeS2
Advanced Geological Information
The following section provides geological data relating to the specimen or the site it was collected from, when available. Information has been obtained from various sources including private and government datasets but may not be up to date. Any geological time periods or ages listed often relate to the primary geology of the area, and may not be the actual date of an event such as mineral formation.