The name "Herkimer Diamond" refers to specimens of double-terminated quartz crystals found in the area of Herkimer County, New York. These remarkable crystals are known for their clarity and loose resemblance to faceted diamonds.
Similar to the structure of other types of quartz, Herkimer Diamonds retain a general hexagonal crystal shape (six sides). They form in vugs (small solution cavities) and pockets (larger cavities) of the 500 million year old Cambrian Little Falls Dolostone host rock. Due to crystal growth with very little to no contact with the cavity walls of the host rock, Herkimer Diamonds are double-terminated, that is, terminate in a point at both ends.
Herkimer Diamonds can be clear, cloudy, smoky or contain impurities of fluid solutions (water, oil or methane),gases or inclusions of smaller crystals. Phantoms (crystals containing other visible crystals of the same type) also occur. Singular crystals are found as well as crystal clusters, scepters (a Herkimer Diamond growing on top of a black prismatic quartz crystal) and as skeletal crystals (a series of crystal edge outlines inside the main crystal). Hopper crystals, where crystal faces are replaced by a step like pattern are also found.
Only double-terminated quartz crystals found in the Herkimer County, New York area are given the name "Herkimer Diamonds". Similar double-terminated crystals have also been found in Arizona, China, Afghanistan, Norway and Ukraine, although these are not given the name "Herkimer Diamond".
The great Herkimer Diamond example pictured to the right was found in upstate New York by AmericanGeode.com.
For those in the metaphysical community, Herkimer Diamonds contain powerful attributes. They are believed to be amplifiers of spiritual energy and exceptional healing crystals. As the most powerful of the quartz crystals, they are also said to magnify the ability of all other stones in their vacinity, and are often chosen to be used during meditation.
Additional Resources for Herkimer Diamonds
General Herkimer Diamond Information & Collection Video - American Geode.com - www.americangeode.com/herkimer.php
Herkimer Diamonds for Purchase - Herkimer Diamonds Mined by Bill and Ann - www.herkimerdiamonds.ca/
Herkimer Diamond General Information - Geology.com - www.geology.com/articles/herkimer-diamonds.shtml
Inclusions & Scepters information and pictures - HerkimerHistory.com - www.herkimerhistory.com/InclusionsScepters.html