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Dick Jones

Richard L. "Dick" Jones, famous Arizona field-collector and dealer, was born in 1933. In the early 1950's he met Richard Bideaux, a young Tucson collector, at a mineral shop in Tucson and they became good friends and collecting partners. They had major successes at the Glove mine (which they worked for months), the Rowley mine (where they found open wulfenite pockets untouched) and the Defiance mine, among others.

In 1960, when Bideaux joined the military service, Jones moved from Tucson to Casa Grande, Arizona where he operated a typewriter repair business, and where he lived for the rest of his life. He gradually increased the amount of time spent collecting minerals until the money he was making selling wholesale quantities of specimens allowed him to close his typewriter business and become a full-time commercial mineral collector and dealer.

Discovering and developing previously unknown mineral occurrences in Arizona, Nevada, Colorado and New Mexico was his specialty, and Richard Bideaux considered Jones' achievements in that area to rival those of the legendary Edwin Over (q.v.). Jones did meticulous research in tracking down localities, and was an excellent field observer of geological signs. He contributed substantial amounts of information to Mineralogy of Arizona, revealing the locations of many of his previously secret discoveries. The locations of many of his non-Arizona finds, however, some of which he worked privately for years, were secrets which died with him.

Dick sometimes ranged farther afield, visiting Prince of Wales Island, Alaska to prospect for epidote, and mining wulfenite at the San Francisco mine in Sonora, Mexico. However, he was an Arizonan at heart, and one of his favorite localities was the Old Yuma mine near Tucson. He acquired ownership of the claim in 1979, and made some good discoveries of wulfenite there before selling the property to Richard Bideaux and Wayne Thompson in 1982.

Dick Jones died of leukemia on March 20, 1982, at the age of 48. He had a personal collection of thumbnail specimens which was purchased by Rob Lavinsky in 2006. A Thumbnail collection was also assembled by his wife Helen.

BIDEAUX, R.A. (1983) Richard L. Jones 1933-1982. Mineralogical Record, 14, 329-331.
JONES, D. (1983) Famous mineral localities: The Old Yuma mine. Mineralogical Record, 14, 95-107.
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[Citation format for this entry:
WILSON, Wendell E. (2019)
Mineralogical Record
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The Mineralogical Record - Dick Jones Dick Jones (at the Tucson Show, 1979)
The Mineralogical Record - Dick Jones 52 x 76 mm,
A label for one of Dick's secret localities.
The Mineralogical Record - Dick Jones 42 x 63 mm
The Mineralogical Record - Dick Jones 52 x 74 mm,
This specimen was purchased by Les Presmyk, who added his catalog number to the label
The Mineralogical Record - Dick Jones 53 x 74 mm
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