Dorothea (Dorle) Kulicke
Our lithotheque is a project, which in its importance meanwhile reaches far beyond the Micromounter Working Group. That’s why we don’t file this article under the Micromounter Working Group, but open a new section with it, in which we will report regularly about our Lithothek in the future.
When we started working on this collection in 2001, we could not have imagined what a success this project would become. Even our board of directors was skeptical and had concerns: “Our micromounters want to try to square the circle”, Mr. Gößwein, at that time 2nd chairman of the association, informed the members during an association evening. These concerns were not unjustified. Many questions were asked at that time, which we could not answer. But we did not have to, because they were not relevant at that time. In the meantime, some of the problems mentioned at that time have become concrete. And we have always found an adequate solution.
Without taking these concerns into account, we simply started working. One of our principles was that everyone can participate, but no one has to. Another was the conviction that visions that seem unrealizable today may become reality tomorrow and a matter of course the day after. These principles have accompanied us for 20 years. And they still apply today.
With this and the following short articles we want to inform you in an entertaining way about what Lithothek is, what is new and where it is heading. Maybe there are some of you who would like to join us. In any case, we would be happy to receive your feedback, which you can send to us at any time at Lithothek@gmx.de. We are happy about positive reactions, but we are also open for criticism and suggestions of any kind.
The Lithothek pursues very different goals. A first very important goal was and still is to keep alive, through its collections, the memory of friends who are no longer with us. With this in mind, we would like to dedicate this first installment of our series to Dorothea Kulicke (Dorle).
Dorle may still be known to some of you. She was a member of the club for many years, and before Gerhard Voges she headed the Seniors and Beginners working group, where she apparently ran a tight ship. Stories are known about her ensuring order and discipline in the group entrusted to her on excursions with the help of her whistle. But she was also very generous. Who else would have managed to invite the entire MM group (which was, however, very small at that time) to collective excursions at her expense.
I met her in early 1995 as a member of the micromounter group. I was new to the Mineral Friends at the time and had great difficulty getting started. The group was very small, met once a month, discussed without pre-determined topics, traded minerals, arranged to go on field trips together, and then went to dinner together. A newcomer was barely acknowledged. I was on the verge of dropping out again. It was Dorle who realized this and prevented it. She invited me to her home where we looked at and discussed minerals from her collection. Thus, as an absolute beginner, I got to know the Clara mine for the first time, the minerals from the Eifel, from Waidhaus, from the Kaiserstuhl, but also from the Ticino and from Laurion.
Soon a close friendship developed from these beginnings also between her and my wife Regine. On a fixed day every week I picked up Dorle and we worked together on minerals at our home. She was not at all pleased at first that I rented an apartment of my own in Heimstetten to work on our hobby there and thus banish the dust inevitably created by formatting raw material from our apartment. She feared (wrongly) that this might be detrimental to the contact between Regine and herself.
When we started work on the Lithothek in 2001, Dorle was one of the first to bring in her collection. She had no family that could have been interested in her micromounts later on. In this respect it was obvious for her to secure the existence of her small treasures beyond the time of her life. Together we went through piece by piece of her collection and decided what should go into the collection and what we wanted to release for sale later on.
Today, there are over 1,300 pieces from her former collection in the Lithothek. Since she always placed special emphasis on aesthetics, many of these collection items have already been photographed and published in the Mineral Atlas, where they can be viewed by anyone. We rate the quality of our collection objects with stars and are very critical. After all, more than 270 micromounts from Dorle’s former collection have received the maximum possible number of five stars.
Dorle died on November 2, 2003, in the evening of the last day of the fair. She really wanted to experience this fair again, but did not have the strength for a personal visit. So she had to be content with studying this year’s fair catalog as the last reading of her life. If you want to know more about our friend Dorle and her passion for minerals, you can find a detailed collector’s profile of Dorle and a total of 580 photos with specimens from her former collection at www.mineralienatlas.de with the search term “Kulicke”.