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Alaska State Gemstone

Large rock of jade - click to see all state gem symbols
A large rock of jade - photo from the DeLange's pictures of Seward Alaska
(used by permission). See All State Gemstones & Geological Symbols.

Jade

Alaska has large deposits of this gemstone, including an entire mountain of jade on the Seward Peninsula. Prior to English exploration in the late 1700's, native Eskimos traded jade (as well as copper, hides and furs).

Alaskan Eskimo family - click to see all state geological symbols
Alaskan Eskimo family - public domain photo from Wikipedia.
See All State Gemstones & Geological Symbols.

The color of jade ranges from shades of green, to yellow, red, black, and white. Lavender jade is most rare and hence the most highly valued. The term jade is generic; it actually refers to three minerals - Jadeite, Nephrite, and Chloromenlanite.

The quality of Alaskan nephrite varies greatly; the finest material is usually found in smooth, stream-rolled boulders. Many of these boulders are covered by a thin rind of brown material (a result of weathering) which must be removed to reveal the smooth green nephrite below.

Source:
Student Information: Alaska Office Economic Development
Short History of Valdez, Alaska: Alvez Convention & Visitors
Links:
History of Ulu Alaskan Eskimo: The Ulu Factory
All State Gemstones & Geological Symbols

    

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Alaska Symbols & Icons:

bird - flower
insect - fish
mammal - dog
marine mammal  
gemstone
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