Gem News International
Gems & Gemology, Winter 2017, Vol. 53, No. 4

Peter J. Dunn (1942–2017)

Distinguished mineralogist and author Pete Dunn died November 8 at the age of 74. He is best known for the 134 new mineral descriptions he wrote over the course of his long career.

Dr. Dunn received his master’s degree and PhD in mineralogy/geology from the University of Delaware in Newark. Before joining the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History in 1972, he served in the U.S. Air Force and worked at Boston University as a curator in the geology department. In addition to characterizing new minerals, Dr. Dunn published a nine-volume monograph and more than 70 papers on the Franklin–Sterling Hill mining district in New Jersey in a number of scientific publications. In 1987, a member of the clinopyroxene subgroup from the Franklin mining district was named “petedunnite” in his honor. A prolific contributor to G&G throughout the 1970s, Dr. Dunn served on the journal’s editorial review board from its inception in 1981 until 1987. Upon his retirement from the National Museum of Natural History in 2008, he volunteered at the museum’s information desk until his death.

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