New Mexico

In May, 2019, I became interested in the Manhattan Project. I had purchased a Manhattan Project silver workers pin at a gem show in Asheville, NC and a dealer showed me a faceted stone made from the leaded glass that was used during the development of the first atomic bomb. I began researching the project and the bomb. That was when I discovered the trinitite.

I actually had a nice specimen of trinitite in my mineral collection that I acquired from the Ken Kyte collection in 2000. I had not seen it in years and it took me a few days to locate the piece in my large collection. I finally found it and spent a day or so studying it. I started doing some research on the trinitite and learned that there are a lot of people out there claiming to have trinitite, but it was either fake, or from some other impact/detonation occurrence, but not the first atomic bomb.

Once you study a variety of authentic trinitite, you will learn it has certain characteristics that are present in all real trinitite. I bought the book, "Trinitite, the Atomic Age Mineral" and learned that there are three major collections that have been documented and authentic. The Harry Baldwin collection, the Ralph Pray collection, and the Wallace T. Smith collection.

I began hunting for sources to locate pieces from these collections. I was finally able to make contact with a lady in New Mexico who had inherited the Wallace T Smith collection. Over the next few months, I made several purchases from her through the mail. In August, 2019, she suggested I come to New Mexico and obtain a quantity of the trinitite. It would be easier for me to go there and hand select the pieces I wanted and it would keep her from having to separate and wrap hundreds of specimens to ship.

At the end of August, I left North Carolina and headed west to New Mexico.

Mississippi River

Tornado weather in Oklahoma.

Tornado shelter and rest area in Texas.

Ugly ass wind mills in Texas. Glad I got to see this landscape years ago before it was ruined.

My favorite part of the trip. Did you know 95 is the new 75!

18 hours later, finally there.

Heading into Albuquerque.