Remembering Former Curator George Robinson

George W. Robinson Jr., age 78, of Ogdensburg, passed away peacefully on Sunday, April 14, 2024, at his home, surrounded by the love of his wife.

Survived by his devoted wife Susan Robinson, George leaves behind cherished cousins Sandy (Bill) Wilkins of Gansevoort, NY, Larry Gillis, Leonard Gillis, Dave Robinson, Steve Robinson, Stanley Robinson, and Jeanne Robinson, all of the Glens Falls area.

George was born on February 7, 1946, in Glens Falls, NY, to the late George W. and Gladys (Purdy) Robinson. He graduated from Glens Falls High School and pursued higher education, earning a bachelor’s degree in geology from Potsdam State in 1968, followed by a PhD in geological sciences from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, in 1978.

Throughout his distinguished career, George made significant contributions to the field of mineralogy and geology. He began as a high school earth science teacher in Heuvelton, NY, from 1968 to 1974, before venturing into self-employment as a mineral dealer from 1974 to 1982. His passion and expertise led him to serve as curator of mineralogy at the Canadian Museum of Nature from 1982 to 1996 and as curator of the A.E. Seaman Mineral Museum and professor of mineralogy at Michigan Technological University from 1996 to 2013. Even after retirement, George continued his academic pursuits as a research associate in the department of geology for St. Lawrence University in Canton, NY.

George’s influence extended beyond his professional accomplishments. He served as an associate editor for esteemed publications such as the Mineralogical Record and the Canadian Mineralogist, and as a consulting editor for Rocks and Minerals. He was a committed member of the Rochester Academy of Science, contributing significantly to the Mineralogical Symposium.

An accomplished author, George published over 100 professional papers and popular publications, along with 8 books, including the renowned “Minerals” (Simon & Schuster, 1994). His dedication to the field was recognized with numerous accolades, including the dedication of the George W. Robinson Laboratory of Mineralogy at SUNY Potsdam in 1985, the naming of the rare lead chromate mineral “Georgerobinsonite” in his honor in 2009, and the prestigious Carnegie Mineralogical Award in 2012.

Beyond his academic pursuits, George found joy in collecting minerals and faceting gemstones, playing the piano, and birdwatching. His passions enriched the lives of those around him and left a lasting impact on the world of mineralogy and geology.

George W. Robinson Jr. will be dearly missed by his family, friends, colleagues, and the scientific community at large. His legacy of scholarship, dedication, and love for the natural world will continue to inspire generations to come.

As we bid farewell to George, may we find solace in the memories shared and the knowledge that his spirit will forever live on in the hearts of those who knew and loved him.

Memorial contributions have been requested to the A.E. Seaman Museum at Michigan Tech. Condolences and fond memories can also be shared online at

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