Use of geocaching.com services is subject to the terms and conditions in our disclaimer
Field Marshal James Keith was born 11 June 1696 at Inverugie Castle, the second son of William, 9th Earl Marischal of Scotland (who was a committed Jacobite) he was named after Prince James Francis Edward Stuart, the Old Pretender and took part in the failed Rising of 1715, after which he was forced into exile on the continent. From Paris he traveled to Spain, became involved in the failed Jacobite expedition of 1719 and later joined the Spanish army. In 1728 he set out for service in Russia, where he spent nearly twenty years as an officer. Too busy to make any contribution to the 1745 Jacobite Rising, in 1747 Keith joined the army of Frederick the Great of Prussia. He died fighting, having been mortally wounded at the battle of Hochkirch, on 14th October 1758. James Keith was buried in Berlin. He is remembered in his home town Peterhead by this prominent statue, whose plinth notes it to be the Gift of William 1st, King of Prussia, to the Town of Peterhead, 23rd August 1868.
The plinth is of granite which was formed when the magma from deep inside the earth formed a new rock as the molten rock cooled and crystallised. Its structure contains many crystals visible to the naked eye. If you look closely you will see different minerals making up the stone.
Granite is a common intrusive plutonic igneous rock. Intrusive means that it has moved into other rocks by force coming up from the mantle. Plutonic means that it is magma that does not reach the surface of the earth and so cools very slowly underground. Igneous (derived from the Latin word ignis meaning fire) is one of the three main rock types, the others being sedimentary and metamorphic. Igneous rock is formed through the cooling and solidification of magma or lava. Because it cools slowly crystals have time to form. Its name comes from the Latin word granum which means “a grain” for the coarse grain crystalline structure of the rock. Individual crystals are visible to the naked eye in all types of granite. It is made up of quartz, mica, and feldspar. It comes in a wide variety of colours including reds, browns, and many shades of grey from almost black to nearly all white.
There are different types of granite. The type of granite a particular specimen is, depends upon the percentages of minerals that make up the rock, especially quartz (Greyish colour), K-feldspar (Redish colour), Na-feldspar (White) and biotite or hornblende (Black).
To claim this earthcache, please send your answers to the questions below to us by email or message centre - do not post in your online log. Your log may be deleted if these criteria are not met. Educational guidelines for Earthcaches are set by Geocaching.com and GeoSociety.org (Earthcache) and have to be adhered to.
1) Considering the statue is almost 150 years old at the time of this cache being placed, is the statue in good condition with regards to the detail of the column and the text on it? Using your observations, would you put this down to placement or the choice of granite as a building material? Give your reasons.
2) Take a close look at the top right of the main column on the back side (W). Describe the shape and the colour of any crystals you can see here. Are there a few crystals or many? And what size are they?
3) Do you think the granite cooled quickly or slowly? Give your reasons
4) Can you name a local quarry where you find this colour granite?
While not compulsory, it is always nice to see photos from your visit
(No hints available.)