Kentucky Agate: State Rock and Mineral Treasure of the Commonwealth
Among the rarest and most prized minerals, agate is one of the most exquisite examples of nature’s artwork. A striking rock that occurs in various shapes and sizes, with a vivid assortment of colors, agates are coveted by collectors and becoming rarer across the globe. Although the Bluegrass State is usually overlooked in the international study of agate, some of the most beautiful and colorful specimens in the world are hidden away in the rugged terrain of eastern Kentucky’s scenic Knobs Region.
Kentucky Agate is the first book to showcase the unique mineral, treasured for its fine grain and vibrant banks of deep, varied colors. Authors Roland L. McIntosh and Warren H. Anderson have collected hundreds of professional color photographs, revealing the beauty and diversity of this sought-after stone. With detailed maps of the region surrounding the city of Irvine, Kentucky, including parts of Estill, Powell, Jackson, Menifee, Madison, and Lee counties, Kentucky Agate reveals locations where agate may be found. Featuring full-color photographs showing aspects of the rock not visible to the naked eye, this book also provides detailed information on the history, geology, chemistry, and formation of the mineral, giving collectors and Kentucky nature enthusiasts a stunning look into the world of agate collection and the hidden story of the breathtaking formation of the official state rock.
Roland L. McIntosh won a Drake video commentary festival award for his documentary on Kentucky agate.
Warren H. Anderson is a research scientist at the University of Kentucky Geological Survey. He is the author of Rocks and Minerals of Kentucky.
The agates found in east central Kentucky are little known in the agate world compared to those from Argentina and Mexico. Yet, Kentucky agates are among the most vividly colored agates this writer has ever seen. I saw them first in the 1970s in Tucson and was immediately impressed by their beauty. Now agate lovers have an opportunity to learn about these amazing agate beauties that rival agates the world over. A new book, Kentucky Agate, from the University Press of Kentucky, is a must for every collector and lover of agates. -- Bob Jones, Senior Consulting Editor, Rock & Gem magazine
This book is a validation and recognition of the significance of this exquisite agate by the elected representatives of Kentucky. The beauty of banded agates can only be appreciated with good photography. The photographic presentation is excellent and covers all the variations of color and pattern that make this agate so attractive and desirable to anyone that appreciates the beauty of these natural objects. -- Roger Clark, author of Fairburn Agate: Gem of South Dakota
In terms of color, variety, and complexity, the Kentucky agates that illustrate this volume are world-class. -- Peter Heaney, Penn State University
McIntosh is an expert on Kentucky agate - stones clustered largely in the Kentucky counties of Jackson, Powell, and Estill. Uncut and unpolished, they look like seeing the earth from a low-flying airliner: intricate patterns of green and gray with an occasional pop of color.
These Kentucky agates have "a wider range of colors and patterns than any agate from anywhere in the world," McIntosh, 69, said. "Any time I open an agate it's a new adventure."-- Kentucky.com -- Cheryl Truman