Alice Kraissl

  1905 - 1986

  Those of us who were privileged to know Alice Kraissl will remember her always. The Franklin Mineral Museum and the Franklin-Ogdensburg Mineralogical Society owe much to her enlightened and enthusiastic participation. A native New Jerseyan, Alice L. Plenty was born May 6, 1905, at Hackensack. She first studied mineralogy at Barnard College and it was there at Columbia University that she and Frederick Kraissl, Jr. began their life-long partnership. Married in 1925, they went on to share engineering and mineralogical interests. Together they founded the Kraissl Company, Inc., producers of a wide range of hydraulic equipment, and as engineers both were involved in the designing aspects as Kraissl Associates.

Alice has supported the Franklin Mineral Museum from its inception. The Plenty Collection was established and donated to memorialize her parents. A diversified array of cabochons, first shown in the Franklin Mineral Show of 1965, displays her own artistic skill and "the relative merits of Franklin/Sterling Hill material as a cutting medium". Alice served as secretary of the Board of Trustees and as Associate Curator of the museum. In 1976 Kraissl Hall was dedicated, donated by Fred and Alice.

Micro-mineralogy was of special interest to Alice as was mineral photography. She was the gracious, generous and knowledgeable hostess of a micro-mount group that met at the Kraissl office in Hackensack, and served as a senior judge at Eastern Federation shows, as well as Consulting Editor for Rocks and Minerals magazine.

Alice was Secretary of F.O.M.S. from 1966 to 1968. She served two terms as President of F.O.M.S., 1970-71. She was a member of the Trustees for the Society from 1972-82.

In the American Mineralogist for Sept.-Oct. 1978, Paul B. Moore and Jun Ito described kraisslite, a new platy arsenosilicate from Sterling Hill. Its name honors the Kraissls for their "pivotal role in the mineralogy of Franklin and Ogdensburg".

With all of her other attributes, Alice was a devoted wife, mother of two daughters, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
Alice completed her life's work September 16, 1986. All who enjoy Franklin mineralogy are greatly indebted to her.
Wilfred R. Welsh
President, Franklin Mineral Museum