This is one of the nicest and rarest pieces in the estate collection I was asked to help with. This is a very glassy, highly opalized slab from a location I have never before seen despite it being near my home. I know many of the private ranches in Central Oregon host a huge variety of petrified wood and there are some truly gorgeous deposits that few collectors have ever seen or even heard of. This one is labeled as a fossil walnut tree slab and coming from near the small town of Post, Oregon. This is the same area that some of the best petrified sycamore limbs in the world are found. A wealthy tire shop owner with stores all over the west coast bought large tracts of land in this area for his sprawling ranch and I suspect this piece came from one of those but cannot be certain. It's very well prepared with a gorgeous polish and a nice rind around the specimen. The back shows some residual glue where a fracture line was stabilized. I would have cleaned this up if I'd done the piece and I still could but it would be at the expense of the historical labels (contact me if you want to discuss options there). It's a truly one of a kind piece. The pores and structure do seem consistent with walnut though I would like to see a better earlywood distinction than I'm able to find in the very opalized replacement. The opal content is so high in this piece that the center has an almost bluish glow to it. A true rarity for fossil collectors!
NOTE: This specimen was acquired by Jim Leicht and became part of his amazing collection. The tags on the back were placed there by Jim and I've left them there for posterity and provenance.
This is a truly amazing, beautifully prepared petrified wood specimen that has been cut and prepared with skill. This slab was part of the Jim Leicht estate collection. Jim lived in the foothills of Mt. Hood in Oregon. During his long collecting career he amassed not one but two world class petrified wood collections. His first collection he sold and donated in the late 20th century to focus his passion on spheres. But even his sphere collection filled with petrified wood and his tastes and interests shifted again to the pursuit of world class petrified wood collector pieces. This piece comes from that second collecting effort which itself spanned more than 30 years. I had the good privilege of knowing Jim and we'd trade from time to time for pieces neither of us could live without. This slab is one of the few pieces from that collection to finally make it back into circulation for a new collector to cherish. Jim collected petrified wood from all over the world but, like many, was particularly fond of the gem grade wood found in the Pacific Northwest. I visited Jim's collection a few times over the years and always admired the breadth of his incredible specimens. He was "old school" and much preferred to keep track of other collectors and collections with frequent phone calls, which proved to be an invaluable source of tips and leads not just for him, but for everyone fortunate enough to be on his call list! Those of us who knew him will miss his friendly, passionate view of both the hobby and those who participate in it. The bulk of his collection remains in the hands of another private collector who has asked me to assist with offering a few duplicates to balance the collection.
This is a world class petrified wood round from Central Oregon. I've seen some beautiful petrified wood from that country but never anything that has this particular color habit. I had heard of a location in California (Boron) that I thought looked something like this, but I have seen so few pieces from that area that it's hard to draw any conclusions about similarities. It is hard to decide if it's really semi-ring porous like walnut or if it's more a diffuse porous species like laurel or birch, but it does have large pores and rays that seem consistent with walnut.
This piece has good cell structure in several areas and wonderful eye appeal. The wood grain is very visible in this piece particularly in the darker regions, though even the bluish white heart of the log is clearly visible to the naked eye. This is a nice, larger sized specimen that will display very well. Getting something this unusual and this beautiful for your own collection is a chance that should not be passed up.
This stone has been properly cut and polished on equipment that was undoubtedly styled in the same northwest lapidary tradition that our shop is tooled with. And flaws in the finish have been corrected before we bring the piece to our collector friends here. The polish really is liquid perfect - a difference in the quality products Sticks-in-Stones has built its reputation on! We consistently offer meticulously prepared specimens with flawless finishes you'll be proud to show in your own collection.
This is a fairly thick slab for the size. It measures about 10 3/4" x 9 1/2" wide. It's cut at a very slight taper that goes from about 0.75" to 0.90" thick. Weight is 5.66 lbs.
A nice, unique naturally wonderful stone collectible exclusively from Sticks-in-Stones Lapidary - eBay's Original Rockshop!