This website features the latest information on the Flagg Mineral Foundation and the activities of its members. We help support and promote public interest in earth science and the mineral collecting hobby.
The site contains information on our current activities, upcoming events, the Foundation Collection, and how to become a member. You can also buy Tucson Show posters with proceeds helping to support Foundation projects. We hope you enjoy your visit!
R.I.P. Arizona Mining & Mineral Museum
On Saturday, April 30, 2011, the Arizona Historical Society fired the staff and closed the Arizona Mining & Mineral Museum. In addition, all the locks to the building were changed, and access to retrieve specimens and other artifacts on loan to the museum is now restricted by appointment only. This action is a clear and blatant violation of the following provisions of Arizona Statute 41-827:
- “The Arizona Historical Society (AHS) shall operate and maintain the centennial museum that houses the mining and mineral museum for the following purposes and with the following authority:”
- “To maintain the mining and mineral museum as the state depository for collecting, cataloging and displaying mining artifacts and various specimens of ores, gemstones, lapidary material and other valuable mineral specimens.”
The abrupt, unannounced closure breaks the plan of record promise by AHS director, Anne Woosley, that the museum shall remain open until June 1st, the end of the current school year. Subsequently, hundreds of students will be denied the opportunity to experience the musem and learn about the importance of mining and minerals in Arizona.
Earth Science Museum
The abrupt closure of the Arizona Mining and Mineral Museum in May 2011 prompted some of its former staff and volunteers to meet and discuss the possibility of establishing a new private museum. This group decided to expand the scope of the old museum to cover the natural wonders of the Earth and to form a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing unique and meaningful Earth science exhibits and educational programs for Arizona students and the general public.
As a result, the Earth Science Museum (ESM) was incorporated in the State of Arizona on July 1, 2011. An application for nonprofit status with the Internal Revenue Service followed in October 2011, and the new museum received a letter of determination on June 21, 2012.
While the Earth Science Museum has been busy securing its status as a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, it has also been actively involved in several outreach and fundraising activities. For the outreach program, the ESM developed new teacher kits with large rock, mineral and fossil samples; created hands-on activities for students; and trained presenters. The kits and class instruction were successfully tested at 17 local schools involving 1,584 students. In addition, the ESM participated at several science fairs and mineral shows which served 1,862 students.
Two very successful fundraising events were held at the Flagg Gem & Mineral Show in January and at the Minerals of Arizona Symposium in April. The ESM along with several local mineral and rock organizations are planning a Family Days Rock and Gem Show October 20-21, 2012, as a joint fundraising effort.
The current focus of the Earth Science Museum is to continue providing outreach educational support services and expand this program to include central Arizona. Specific short term goals include: acquiring a van, developing prototype rock and mineral display cases that will be deployed at school libraries, and adding personnel to increase the coverage of school districts. In addition, a major effort is planned to either build or lease an initial “brick and mortar” museum located in the Phoenix area. This “mini-museum” is designed to serve the general public and will feature several geology and mineral exhibits including the Flagg Mineral Collection.
The long term goal is to build and operate a world class museum dedicated to the Earth sciences. The museum expansion will be a distinctive Phoenix landmark offering a full range of facilities, immersive exhibits, and personalized visitor experiences.
Building a new museum represents a huge challenge, especially given the current period of economic uncertainty. The ESM however, understands the requirements and has created a set of mission-based, market-oriented, experience driven strategies to make the museum a thriving, “must see” destination for Earth science education.
To learn more about the Earth Science Museum, please visit EarthScienceMuseum.org or
Collecting Arizona, State of Mines, Legacy of Minerals
Collectors Les Presmyk, Tony Potucek & Richard Graeme in association with publisher Gloria Staebler (Lithographie, LLC) are working on a new book that is currently available. This volume covers Arizona minerals from the perspective of collectors and present stories of collecting specimens by periods of time.
Mines, Ghost Towns and Legends of the American West
Ivan Herring has published five new books relating to Arizona minerals which are available in the Amazon Kindle e-book system. These interesting books are part of the “Mines, Ghost Towns and Legends of the American West” series. All are available for free review on Ivan’s Amazon author page or simply by going to the Amazon Kindle Store website and entering the titles in the search box.
Click here to see these books
The current Arizona books are listed below and Ivan is working on a book for Pima County, which will hopefully be out this fall.
Mines of the American West – Pinal County, Arizona: This book contains over 2,525 entries relating to mines and mineralization in Pinal County.
Mines of the American West – Maricopa County, Arizona: This book contains over 1,340 entries relating to mineralization in Maricopa County.
Mines of the American West – Mohave County, Arizona: This book contains over 2,225 entries relating to mines and mineralization in Mohave County.
Mines of the American West – Coconino County, Arizona: This book contains over 900 entries relating to mines and mineralization in Coconino County.
Mines, Ghost Towns and Legends of the American West – Yavapai County, Arizona: This book contains over 2,200 entries relating to mines and mineralization in Yavapai County.
There are also books available in the same series for mines and mineralization in California, Nevada and Utah.
Call for Mineral and Fossil Donations
The Foundation raises most of our funds through mineral sales, and we currently need donations of quality mineral or fossil specimens. So, if you’re running out of space for the your collection and/or have some extra specimens that you would like to donate, we would certainly be interested in receiving these items. While all contributions are appreciated, we do ask that you help us out by selecting materials that will be suitable for sale to the general public. The Foundation relies solely on volunteers, and with everyone’s busy schedules it can be a bit difficult to go through heaps of unfamiliar, unsorted stuff to find saleable items. Thank you!
Some links on this site open forms in pdf format
To get a free copy of Adobe Reader, click here.