The Lithothek of the Munich Micromounters came into being at about the same time as the Mineral Atlas around the year 2001. The basic idea was the question of what should become of the collections of the increasingly older members when they are no longer there. The thought that a collection could belong to a group and not to an individual was alienating to many. According to the motto, “everyone may, no one must participate”, however, enough group members could be convinced of the idea that the care of a group means more security than the fate of an individual collector.
In 2001 it was started to take over the collections of the members Dorothea Kulicke, Erwin Schuhbauer, Manfred Seitz and Peter Köhlen with their best pieces into the Lithothek. In addition, there were many stages of Klaus Fleck, who wanted to get out of the mineral trade and donated his entire stock of trade goods to the Munich Micromounters. The idea quickly spread outside the Micromounter working group and met with a positive response. Perhaps the best example of this is the now deceased Klaus-Dieter Bausch, who came to Munich especially to contribute his collection including photos to the Lithothek.
The Lithothek is a model of success, from the first hour and until today. Not only that the collection is constantly growing, quantitatively and qualitatively. In the “Stufenheim”, an apartment that is available to the working group at low cost, members of the working group meet regularly several times a week to work on the collection and maintain social contacts. Today, in 2021, the collection includes more than 53,000 specimens from over 7,000 sites worldwide. Over 400 partners have contributed to the collection, mostly as donations. Over 3,580 different mineral species recognized by the IMA are present.