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PIPESTONE:The Sacred ‘Peace Pipe’

Despite its mundane petrological classification as a mudstone, pipestone has a lot going for it. Its great workability, exceedingly fine grain, and attractive reddish-brown colors make it a fine carving medium.

More importantly, pipestone, also known as argillite and catlinite, has an extraordinarily rich history and great cultural significance. Sacred to many Native Americans, it is a symbol of tribal traditions and religions. And pipestone, also celebrated in Anglo-American art and literature, is the raison d’être of the National Park Service’s Pipestone National Monument in Pipestone, Minnesota.

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Rock&Gem Magazine
April 2019
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