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Julius Gisler
(1888-1959)

Julius Gisler was born in Amsteg, Switzerland on February 15, 1888, and married (Josephine) there in 1911. Their son, Oscar Armine Gisler, was born in Amsteg on November 5, 1912. Julius served as a guide to mountain climbing parties in the Swiss Alps, and first became interested in minerals after seeing what the Swiss Strahlers were finding there. He collected specimens at many noted European localities, especially the quartz clefts in the Swiss Alps. Julius had relatives in San Francisco, and visited them twice (1905, 1910) before settling there permanently in 1914; the following year his wife and young son joined him.

Julius began his mineral business in 1922 while working as a cook in hotels and restaurants in San Francisco. By 1942 his son Oscar had joined him, and they became the firm of "Julius Gisler & Son." His personal collection was rich in "large and colorful crystallizations," with many "slabs of groups of crystals." He actively collected at many California localities, and had an especially fine suite of self-collected benitoite, superb specimens of black tourmaline from his claim at the Mount Thompson Gem mine in Lassen County, black "melanite" garnet from San Benito County, and choice native gold specimens from various California mines. His 75-pound cluster of acicular black tourmaline in quartz crystals was his premier specimen. He also had fine axinite crystals from Luning, Nevada and vesuvianite crystals from Ludwig.

Julius died in San Francisco on June 4, 1959, and his son continued the business for some years thereafter, eventually moving to Las Vegas, Nevada and operating under his own name, Oscar Gisler. It appears that Oscar finally sold the business and his stock of minerals to Scott Williams of Southwest Scientific Company in Scottsdale, Arizona in 1965. Oscar Gisler retired to Reno, Nevada and died in Placer County, California on November 12, 1978. His mother Josephine died in California in 1988, at the age of 97.

References:
DAKE, H.C. (1937) Leading California collections; outstanding cabinets described. The Mineralogist, 5 (1), 29-103.
Social Security Death Index
California Death Index
Ellis Island Records
Federal Census 1920, 1930
WWI Draft Registration
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[Citation format for this entry:
WILSON, Wendell E. (2017)
Mineralogical Record
Biographical Archive, at www.mineralogicalrecord.com.]
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The Mineralogical Record - Julius Gisler 35 x 54 mm,
"Gisler & Son" (the son being Oscar Gisler)
The Mineralogical Record - Julius Gisler 35 x 54 mm,
"Gisler & Son" label, ca.1940-1959.
The Mineralogical Record - Julius Gisler 40 x 70 mm,
"Oscar Gisler" label, 1959-1965
The Mineralogical Record - Julius Gisler 50 x 63 mm,
"Oscar Gisler" label, 1959-1965.
The Mineralogical Record - Julius Gisler 38 x 73 mm,
Southwest Scientific Company label for specimens from the Julius and Oscar Gisler stock, noting the date of the founding of the Gisler company in 1922 and the final close-out in 1965.
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