Extracted from The S.A. Lapidary Magazine, February 1968, vol. 2 number 1:

“Wits Club was founded in 1958 by a small band of interested people and has grown from strength to strength. Present membership being well over 150. The Club is affiliated to the Johannesburg Council for Adult Education. Members meet every 4th Wednesday of the month in the Johannesburg Public Library. Field Trips are arranged periodically and members who have no equipment of their own can polish their spoils at the fully equipped workroom in the centre of the town.”

Club Objective: To bring people together who enjoy rock, mineral and gem collecting, the study of earth sciences and the practice of lapidary art and to encourage them in the pursuit of their hobby.

The Witwatersrand Gem and Mineral Club meet on the last Wednesday of the month at the University of Johannesburg. At the last Wednesday month-end meeting a talk is usually given by mostly invited speakers on some aspect of the hobby of collecting rocks and minerals, earth sciences or natural history.


Weekend field trips together with the Pretoria Gem and Mineral club are one on a monthly basis. Weekend outings include trips to Groot Marico for limonite, including mampoer tasting and an outing to the Lichtenburg alluvial diamond diggings for agates, to Upington after rose quartz and amethyst, to the Magaliesberg for “Transvaal Jade”, to Malelane after magnesite and buddstone “(African Jade”), to Silver Hills for galena, cerussite and limonite (pseudo after pyrite), to Pilanesberg Nature Reserve for “herring-bone” fluorite, to collect calcite, and zeoilite minerals in the basalts of the Springbok Flats, to the Steelpoort area for chrome and andalusite, to Valtaki for serpentine and Hobhouse for agates. Geological educational trips are planned to Tswaing Meteor Crater and to the geology trail of the Roodepoort Botanical Gardens. A big attraction at both meetings is members bringing mineral specimens to either sell of swap. Recent mineral section meetings included discussions of the following themes: gem and lapidary minerals; practical mineral rating (bring 1 specimen to rate); unusual quartz; minerals from Wits gold mines; inclusions in minerals; red-coloured minerals, radioactive minerals, and pyrites. The club has over many years collected a large volume of books on minerals and geology and back-issues of the Mineralogical Record, which is available for its members.




Jono Hotz | jonohotz@gmail.com


William Black | william.bsmblack@telkomsa.net

Newsletter Editor:

Bruce Cairncross | brucec@uj.ac.za

Club’s e-mail address:

Postal Address:

PO Box 3708, Cresta, 2118


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