Purpose of the Yakima Rock and Mineral Club
The Yakima Rock and Mineral Club has been active for 77 years. We are one of the founding organizations for the lapidary arts in the Northwest and have members who collectively have hundreds of years of experience in finding and working with rocks and minerals.
The lapidary expertise of some members of our club has been featured in Lapidary Journal Jewelry Artist and Rock & Gem Magazine. We have members who are masters in cutting, polishing, and flat lapping rock, who readily share their expertise with members. We, also, have individuals who work in silver casting, wire wrapping, beading, jewelry construction, and gem faceting.
We have a very active juniors program that offers classes on a number of earth science topics and also a group of individuals who work on equipment design and repair.
We are interested in working with rocks and minerals, going on field trips, making jewelry, and having a good time together. Links to websites for the Northwest Federation and Washington State Mineral Council which offer field trips to collecting sites in the Northwest are included on our resources page.
The Yakima Rock and Mineral Club, Inc. keeps members informed of what’s happening in the club and hobby, and works to keep interest going in the Earth Sciences in all it’s facets including the Lapidary Arts.
Click here to download Club Pamphlet
Many of our members are Lapidary Artists.
What is Lapidary?
- A lapidary (the word means “concerned with stones”) is an artisan who practices the craft of working, forming and finishing stone, mineral, gemstones, and other suitably durable materials into functional and/or decorative wearable, items (e.g. cameos, cabochons, and more complex faceted designs).
- There exist three broad categories of lapidary arts. These are the procedures of tumbling, cabochon cutting, and faceting. The distinction is somewhat loose, and leaves a broad range within the term cabochon.
- Most lapidary work is accomplished using motorized equipment that successively decreases material sizes until a polish is achieved using mediums, such as tin oxide, glasitite or cerium(IV) oxide.