Curious about the world under your feet?

Join with us to explore

the earth's 4000+ minerals and how they came to be!


Mission of the Mineralogical Society of the District of Columbia (MSDC)

  • To learn together and further knowledge about mineralogy and earth sciences
  • To share the pleasure of collecting minerals
  • To welcome you to explore these interests with us

Who We Are

  • We're rockhounds, professional mineral scientists, mineral collectors and enthusiasts, and people with new interests in minerals and earth sciences.
  • We're from DC, the Maryland and Virginia suburbs, and points beyond.
  • You're always welcome!

What we do:

  • Since 1942, we've met at the Smithsonian Institution to discuss all facets of earth sciences and hear  from experts in many related fields.
  • We sponsor or join with other local clubs for field trips.
  • Our monthly newsletters offer diverse articles at all knowledge levels.
  • We support mineral sciences by volunteering at the Smithsonian and elsewhere and by finding other ways to expand interest and knowledge.

When and Where

  • 1st Wednesday of every month except July and August.
  • At the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (NMNH), 10th Street and Constitution Avenue NW, Washington, DC.
  • 7:30 p.m. in the Constitution Avenue lobby. A security officer leads us to our meeting room, so please be on time.
  • December time and place may vary.

Next meeting – everyone welcome!

January 3rd Program – MINDAT Trip to the Kola Peninsula

From August 24 to September 1, 2017, MINDAT organized an “adventure” to the Kola Peninsula, in the far northwest of Russia.  Guided by local and international experts, a group of 40 people visited some of the most exciting and remote mineral localities in the world. The Kola Peninsula is home to a huge number of rare mineral species, many of them found nowhere else on Earth.

One participant in this MINDAT adventure was Casper Voogt.  This month, Casper will present an overview of the adventure, which included visits to museums and private collections in addition to various Kola Peninsula localities – mines, dumps, and quarries in Apatity, Afrikanda, Kovdor, and Lovozero.   There were opportunities for purchase and collecting for the participants.  Casper will present a summary of the trip including mineralogical and other highlights and show us some of the specimens he brought back. 

Casper is a part-time mineral dealer, lifelong mineral collector, and avid traveler.  His academic background is in architecture (Princeton and Georgia Tech).  He has lived in the US, the Netherlands, Aruba, and Switzerland.  In 'real life' he runs a web development company and is the webmaster of the Northern Virginia Mineral Club and co-webmaster of our MSDC website.

Please join us in taking Casper to dinner on January 3rd before the club meeting.  We will be meeting at 6:00 pm at Elephant & Castle Restaurant, 1201 Pennsylvania Ave, NW, Washington, DC, about 2 blocks from the Smithsonian Institution National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) where our club meeting is held.  If you cannot make it to dinner, we will meet in the NMNH lobby at 7:30 pm and a security officer will lead us to the meeting room for Casper’s presentation.

Want to know more about any of this?

  • Email us at thompson01 at erols dot com. We’re happy to answer your questions.

  • Check the MSDC newsletter.

  • Visit a meeting any time!