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Carlos P. Barbosa

Carlos do Prado do Barbosa, well-known Brazilian mineral dealer, was born in the town of Alfenas, Minas Gerais, Brazil on January 7, 1917. He graduated from the University of Minas Gerais (Belo Horizonte) with a degree in Chemical Engineering in 1939, and went on to post-graduate work, earning a specialized degree in Mineralogy from the National College of Philosophy in Rio de Janeiro in 1943. Throughout his professional career he worked for the National Institute of Technology in Rio de Janeiro, on the recovery of gold; he retired in 1972, after suffering lung damage from the inhalation of toxic gases.

Following his retirement he decided to pursue his love of minerals full-time, both as a mineral dealer and as an independent mineralogical researcher. He attended the Tucson Show for the first time in 1972 or 1973, joining the dealers informally set up at the Desert Inn. Although his English was poor, he endeared himself to the international collecting and dealing community, and quickly became well-known and admired for the fine Brazilian minerals he brought. His kindness, friendliness and generosity transcended the language barrier, and made him many friends among the collectors, curators, dealers, and even among the housekeeping staff--the young women doted on him like a grandfather, which indeed he was (Carlos had four children, the youngest just 14 years old, nine grandchildren and one great-grandchild). He continued to attend the show every year until 2002 when, because of his failing health, he sadly acknowledged that it would probably be his final year there; he bade many of his cherished friends goodbye and worked at selling off the last of his stock.

Wherever interesting minerals were being found in Brazil, Carlos had the skill and the intuition to be on the spot and save untold numbers of unique and interesting specimens from the crushers and smelters. And no matter how rare and unusual the minerals might be, Carlos always had the analytical data at hand to back up his identifications. Even in the last years of his life, when his health was declining, he continued to search for new things. Carlos Barbosa died of pneumonia on April 7, 2003, and was buried (in accordance with his wishes) at the tiny cemetery in Linópolis where he can be close to the minerals he loved. He deserves to be honored and remembered as one of the most important Brazilian field mineralogists and mineral dealers of the last century.

MENEZES. L. (2003) Obituary--Carlos do Prado do Barbosa. Mineralogical Record, 34, 291-292.
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The Mineralogical Record - Carlos P. Barbosa Carlos Barbosa
(Kent England photo)
The Mineralogical Record - Carlos P. Barbosa 51 x 61 mm
The Mineralogical Record - Carlos P. Barbosa 51 x 60 mm
The Mineralogical Record - Carlos P. Barbosa 49 x 69 mm
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