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George W. Robinson
(1946-    )

George Willard Robinson was born in Glens Falls, New York on February 7, 1946, the son of George Robinson, Sr., a machinist. He grew up in South Glens Falls, where he first got interested in minerals while doing a project on hobbies in the third grade. His early mentors in mineral collecting and mineralogy were Elmer Rowley, Robert Swigert and George Maslachenko, members of the Capitol District Mineral Club. He was also inspired by the mineral exhibits at the New York State Museum in Albany.

George earned his B.A. degree in Geology at the State University of New York in 1968, and then took a position as Earth Science instructor at Heuvelton Central School in Huelvelton, New York. He married artist Susan M. Smith in 1971. Returning to college in 1974, he went on to receive his PhD in Mineralogy at Queens University in Kingston, Ontario in 1979 (studying under Dr. Leonard G. Berry, and writing his dissertation on the occurrence of rare-earth elements in zircon). Following graduation he indulged his love of minerals by dealing in specimens full-time from 1978 to 1982. (His labels with the Kingston, Ontario address date to 1978; with the Ogdensburg, New York address to 1979-1982.) He specialized in Canadian Grenville Province minerals (Otter Lake, Quebec apatite); Thunder Bay, Ontario amethyst; Herkimer Diamonds; general worldwide minerals; and bulk/educational study specimens. He was also a one-third owner of the DeKalb diopside locality and handled most of the specimens mined there in the 1970's and early 1980's. He dispersed his personal collection of approximately 3,000 mineral specimens in the early 1980's. The better specimens went to the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa.

In 1982 George was hired by the Canadian Museum of Nature as Curator in the Mineral Sciences Section, and served on the Gallery Development Team (1986-1991). He was promoted to Senior Collection Specialist in 1991, a position he held until 1996, when he was hired by Michigan Technological University in Houghton to be the new Curator at the A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum, and Professor in the Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences. During these years he also became an accomplished mineral photographer, building up substantial stock files of mineral photos for the museums.

George has an extensive personal bibliography including authorship or co-authorship of seven books, monographs and books chapters; most important of these are the revision of Heinrich's Mineralogy of Michigan (2004), the Mineralogical Record monograph on Yukon Phosphates (1992), and the 1994 Simon & Schuster book Minerals, reprinted in 1995 as Gems, Crystals and Minerals. He has also written or co-authored 22 articles in the popular collector literature, 34 articles in scientific journals (including the descriptions of nine new mineral species), and 38 refereed abstracts. He has conducted the "What's New in Minerals" forum at the Rochester Mineralogical Symposium (1985-1995), served as an abstractor for Mineralogical Abstracts (1977-2002), served as a Designated Expert Examiner for minerals for the Federal Government of Canada (1982-1996), and served on the Geology Advisory Committee for Sault College (1987-1990). He has been a committee member/judge for the Mineralogical Association of Canada's Berry Award and Sabina Award, and has chaired the Carnegie Mineralogical Award Selection Committee. In fact, George received the Carnegie Mineralogical Award himself for 2012.

In addition he has served as an Associate Editor for The Canadian Mineralogist (1998-2000), The Mineralogical Record (1983-present), Axis (2005-present) and Canadian Gemmologist; is a long-time member of the Board of Directors of Mineralogical Record, Inc., has held the position of Research Associate at the New York State Museum (2002-present), has received (with co-author Steven C. Chamberlain) the Friends of Mineralogy Award for the best article published in The Mineralogical Record in 1991, and was inducted into the National Rockhound/Lapidary Hall of Fame in 2004. He may be reached at:

A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum
Michigan Technological University
1400 Townsend Drive
Houghton, MI 49931

CHAMBERLAIN, S.C. (1980) Collections and Displays: The George Robinson Collection, Ogdensburg, New York. Rocks and Minerals, 55 (2), 70 74
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[Citation format for this entry:
WILSON, Wendell E. (2019)
Mineralogical Record
Biographical Archive, at]
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The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson George Robinson
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson 29 x 63 mm,
Kingston address (1978)
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson 30 x 62 mm,
Kingston address (1978)
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson 29 x 64 mm,
Ogdensburg address (1979-1982)
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson 22 x 50 mm,
Ogdensburg address (1979-1982)
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson 22 x 50 mm,
Ogdensburg address (1979-1982)
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson Business cad, 51 x 88 mm,
Ogdensburg address (1979-1982)
The Mineralogical Record - George W. Robinson 51 x 77 mm,
Ogdensburg address (1979-1982)
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