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Edna M. Scott

Edna Martha Everly was born in Atlantic, Iowa in March of 1867, the daughter of Jennie and Lewis Everly, a farmer. She traveled with her family to Franklin County, Nebraska, and from there to the Black Hills of South Dakota in a covered wagon when she was ten years old. They settled in Harney City, an early mining town near present-day Keystone. Her father had been drawn there by the gold rush, and even as a child Edna was always fascinated by the minerals and rocks of the area, especially the pegmatitic rose quartz.

Unsuccessful at finding gold, her father became postmaster of Harney City for two years until it was disbanded. They then moved to Rockerville, where they spent the next 11 years. There Edna met and married Samuel S. Scott in 1886, a mining engineer, surveyor and assayer, who was one of the founders of Rapid City. In 1892 they relocated to Custer, where Samuel took up farming, and they remained there for the rest of their lives.

Scott's Rose Quartz mine, located about 9 miles southeast of Custer, South Dakota, was discovered by Edna's husband Samuel on August 15, 1902, while he was out gathering wild raspberries. He began advertising as a mineral dealer in The Mineral Collector in November 1904, offering minerals from throughout the Black Hills, as well as rose quartz from his mine, which soon became an important source of income for the family, augmenting the income from their farm. When Samuel died sometime between 1910 and 1920, Edna took over the management of the mine and shop.

The pegmatite body proved to be the most prolific producer of high-quality rose quartz in all of the Black Hills; it has yielded thousands of tons in a wide variety of grades, from fine gem rough to specimens suitable for cabinets, rock gardens, fireplace facings and even large cemetery monuments weighing up to 2,200 pounds. Between 1916 and 1925 Edna shipped 1,000 pounds a year to the Leycer Brothers in Idar-Oberstein, Germany for cutting and carving, and also shipped thousands of pounds to China. Other pegmatite minerals encountered included arsenopyrite, native gold, microcline, fine schorl crystals to 5 inches in diameter and (in 1912) a green beryl crystal 20 feet long and 4 feet in diameter. She began advertising in Rocks & Minerals in March 1927, and wrote an article on her rose quertz mine for that magazine in 1941.

Scott's Rose Quartz Company, also called Scott's Minerals, offered crystal specimens of worldwide minerals and "fine specimen collections containing 100, 24, 18 and 15 fine Black Hills minerals." Of course she specialized in rose quartz from her own mine, and also dealt in cutting materials, jewelry and rockwork. For many years she sponsored the South Dakota Mining Day Picnic at her rose quartz mine. Her son, Frank Scott, eventually took over the management of her rose quartz mine and mineral business. She also had sons Charles (who predeceased her), and George, and a daughter, Alta.

Edna M. Scott died April 4, 1954 in Custer. The patented rose quartz claim is still owned by her family (now under the management of her great grandson Carl), and has substantial reserves of rose quartz remaining to be mined.

DAKE, H.C. (1942) Scott's Rose quartz. The Mineralogist, 10 (5), 160-161.
SCOTT, E.M. (1941) Scott Rose Quartz mine. Rocks & Minerals, 16 (10), 360-363.
ZODAC, P. (1954) Obituary notices: Edna M. Scott. Rocks & Minerals, 29 (7-8), 406.
South Dakota Births, 1856-1903.
U.S. Federal Census, 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930.
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WILSON, Wendell E. (2019)
Mineralogical Record
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The Mineralogical Record - Edna  M. Scott Edna M. Scott
The Mineralogical Record - Edna  M. Scott Samuel Scott's November 1904 ad in The Mineral Collector
The Mineralogical Record - Edna  M. Scott Scott's ad January 1954 ad in The Mineralogist
The Mineralogical Record - Edna  M. Scott 35 x 80 mm
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