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Kenucky Agate was formed in the Borden layer of the MIssissippian geologicl age which according to geologists was between 225 and 375 million years ago. The shale of the borden formation is brown to green colored siltstone which is the matrix in which the agate was formed. The siltstone matrix exposed to the weather erodes and the agates slowly move down the hillsides into the streams in Powell,Estill and Jackson counties.
We have more varied forms and colors of agate here in Kentucky than any other single known area in the world. The forms include banded, fortification, moss, sagentic, plume, flame, cloud, veil, snowflake, eye and crazy lace. Some agates have two or more combinations of forms with variations from opaque to translucent. The colors range from single representations to complex combinations of brilliant red, orange, yellow, burgundy, oxblood, to the more subtle pastels of lavender, pink, pale green and grey.
About the Book
Among the rarest and most prized minerals, agate is one of the most
exquisite examples of nature’s artwork. A striking rock that occurs in
various shapes and sizes, with a vivid assortment of colors, agates are
coveted by collectors and becoming rarer across the globe. Although the
Bluegrass State is usually overlooked in the international study of
agate, some of the most beautiful and colorful specimens in the world
are hidden away in the rugged terrain of eastern Kentucky’s scenic Knobs
Reviews of Kentucky Agate Book
From rough found in the streambeds of Station Stamp Creek to finished jewelry, the story of Kentucky agates, the official rock of the Bluegrass State, is told in words and shown with beautiful images.
-Douglas Kennedy is an instructor of gemology at GIA in Carlsbad, California
The agates found in east central Kentucky are little known in the agate world compared to those from Argentina and Mexico. Yet, Kentucky agates are among the most vividly colored agates this writer has ever seen. I saw them first in the 1970s in Tucson and was immediately impressed by their beauty. Now agate lovers have an opportunity to learn about these amazing agate beauties that rival agates the world over. A new book, Kentucky Agate, from the University Press of Kentucky, is a must for every collector and lover of agates. -- Bob Jones, Senior Consulting Editor, Rock & Gem magazine
This book is a validation and recognition of the significance of this exquisite agate by the elected representatives of Kentucky. The beauty of banded agates can only be appreciated with good photography. The photographic presentation is excellent and covers all the variations of color and pattern that make this agate so attractive and desirable to anyone that appreciates the beauty of these natural objects. -- Roger Clark, author of Fairburn Agate: Gem of South Dakota
In terms of color, variety, and complexity, the Kentucky agates that illustrate this volume are world-class. -- Peter Heaney, Penn State University
is an expert on Kentucky agate - stones clustered largely in the
Kentucky counties of Jackson, Powell, and Estill. Uncut and unpolished,
they look like seeing the earth from a low-flying airliner: intricate
patterns of green and gray with an occasional pop of color.