Cochise College          Photos of Minerals

                          Geology Home Page                

                          Roger Weller, geology instructor

                                  copyright 2007-R.Weller

Mineral Information on:

Chemical Group:    silicate

Chemical Formula:   

Color: pale green, white, pink, gray, reddish brown                   Streak:  white

Luster: pearly, greasy, dull


Hardness:  1        Specific Gravity:  2.82                 

Cleavage: 1 direction of perfect cleavage


Crystal Forms and Habits: Monoclinic system
     Talc occurs as foliated masses or compact fine-grained aggregates (soapstone)

Mineral Associations:  metamorphic mineral

Identifying Characteristics:  very soft and easy to carve

Uses: talcum powder, ceramics, paint filler: as soapstone it is used for carvings and
     acid-resistant table tops

Talc, variety soapstone, can be found on Soapstone Hill, midway between
Santa Barbara and Santa Maria, California. From the little town of Los Olivos,
take Figueroa Mountain Road to the Figueroa campground.

Toxicity:      when-swallowed-  low            when inhaled- not encouraged

Additional Information:  In compact masses, talc is known as soapstone or steatite.