The "Big Hole" or Kimberly Mine, originally referred to as the Colesberg Kopje, is an open-pit mine in Kimberley, South Africa. It is claimed to be the second largest hole excavated by hand.
From 1871 to 1914 up to 50,000 miners dug the hole with picks and shovels, yielding 6,000 pounds of diamonds. The underground Kimberley Mine was mined to a depth of well over 1/2 mile (1,097 meters). It was closed in 2005.
Kimberlite is an igneous, oftentimes diamond-bearing rock that is named after the town of Kimberley, South Africa. The original frontier town was called New Rush, and quickly homes and businesses arose from the barren landscape. In June 1873, New Rush was renamed Kimberley. The 1869 discovery of the Star of South Africa Diamond (an 83.5-carat (16.70 g) spawned a diamond rush to the area which resulted in the open-pit mine called the "Big Hole." The morphology of kimberlite pipes and the classical carrot shaped brecciated fragments seen in it is the result of explosive diatreme volcanism from very deep mantle derived sources. Volcanic explosions produced vertical columns of rock that rose from deep magma reservoirs.
Size: 59mm L X 46mm W X 14mm D, Weight: 85.7grams
This material was legally obtained in a trade with a scientific institution.
Shipped in a perky display case with information, Certificate of Authenticity, and tag stand. Acrylic stand and photo cube not included.
These are photos of the front and the back (one with tag).
This specimen makes a great addition to any important geological collection.
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