Dazzling Blue Stones Found in Michigan Aren’t Stones At All
Earlier this year, a friend from Florida introduced me to the 'glowing rocks of the UP' also known as the Yooper Stone. You can read more below:
Now, I'm learning that there's another sought-after, collectible stone here in Michigan: The Leland Blue Stone. Here's the thing though...it's not actually a stone. Let me explain.
I recently came across a Facebook post from a woman named Lisa Petersen in the Facebook Group, Leland Blue Stones (slag) and other Northern MI Beach Stones which showed pictures of what I thought was...just a rock:
Sure it's a pretty rock but, it's just a rock, right?
After giving "Leland Blue" a quick google search I discovered that not only are these bright blue colored "stones" collectible but that they're actually slag which is defined by Wikipedia as,
glass-like by-product left over after a desired metal has been separated (i.e., smelted) from its raw ore.
According to Lelandmi.com, a website dedicated to all things Leland stone, the stones found in the UP are left over from the smelting process used in the 1800's by the Leland Lake Superior Iron Company.
The site goes on to say that Leland Blue Stones can be found in a multitude of colors and have, themselves, become an new kind of industry with stones being used in jewelry, decorations and more. If you'd like to see more on how to spot these stones and more about their history check out this video:
But, Are They Worth Anything?
Referring to Lisa's Facebook post above, she said that someone offered to buy the stone that her husband had found which made me wonder...are these stones (that actually aren't stones) worth any money?
Searching Ebay, it looks like these stones range in price from $15 to $50 depending on the size. Similarly on Etsy, prices range from under $20 to over $100 but that's mostly due to the type of purchase you're making. Buying plain stones will, obviously, vary in cost compared to a homemade windchime that happens to include Leland Blue Stones.
Regardless of what they're worth I must admit, they are certainly eye-catching. Keep an eye out the next time you're wandering down the Michigan shoreline. You never know when you'll spot a Leland Blue Stone.