Enjoy reading about the breathtaking beauty and origin of the gemstones used in our jewelry.
The Kingman Turquoise mine is one of the oldest and highest producing Turquoise mines in America. It was originally discovered by prehistoric Indians well over 1000 years ago. Kingman Turquoise is known for its beautiful sky blue color and produces many variations of blue turquoise. The Kingman mine also produces green turquoise from the Turquoise Mountain side of the mine. Kingmun Turquoise has been produced as a by-product from the copper mining in the Mineral Park Mining District The Mineral Park Mine (Kingman Turquoise Mine) is located in the Acerbate mountains 14 miles northwest of Kingman, Arizona. The area lies in high desert country at an elevation of 3,345 feet and is surrounded by three mountain ranges. It has been commercially mined since the late 1880's to the early 1900's. It is currently mined by Colbaugh Processing Inc. With so many thousands pounds of good quality turquoise produced in the Kingman area over the last one hundred years it is hard to believe that today very little high-grade Kingman turquoise is available.
Larimar is a rare form of Peclolire. which was discovered in the 1970's and is only found in the Dominican Republic. It has an extraordinary blue appearance similar to the color of the ocean in tropical areas. Hardness varies between 5-7 on the Mohs scale with the darker blue stones ranging closer to 7. The name Larimar comes from a combination of Larissa and Mar and was given to the stone by a Dominican who named the stone after his daughter Larissa and Mar, the Spanish word for sea. lts powers are believed to help us view events from different perspectives, to soften and enlighten, to heal the emotional, physical, mental and spirirual body.
Gaspeite is a relatively rare mineral found only in a few localities. It is a nickel magnesium iron carbonate with a hardness of about 3. It's name is derived from the location where it was first discovered-the Gaspe peninsula of Quebec, Canada. Its color range is pale green to apple green, some varies are almost a neon green and it often contains brownish inclusions which give it a distinctive character. Gaspeite is found as a secondary mineral around nickel sulfide deposits. In addition to Canada's Gaspe peninsula, good Gaspeile specimens have been found in the Kambalda and Widge Mooltha areas, north of Perth, Australia.
As a fairly new discovery in 1966, this mineral has no known folklore although it is mentioned that the Aborigines used gaspeite to bring about good fortune.
Sugilite is a rare stone, first found in Japan. Canada and India. The most recent occurrence was found in 1975 in the Kalahari Desert, Northern South America. In 1979 a large deposit of gem grade sugilite was found 3200 feet below the original discovery. Sugilite is named for the Japanese geologist who discovered the first specimens, Ken-ichi Sugi. It is opaque with a waxy luster and ranges from a pale grayish lavender to a deep dark purple. Sugilite often contains black matrix, reddish brown or yellowish blotches. Bright purple stones with little matrixing or blotches are the most valued. Gem grade sugilite is beautifully translucent and because it is quite rare it brings a high price. It is said that sugilite strengthens the heart, aids physical healing and reduces stress. It is a balancer of mind, body and spirit.
Tiger eye is a member of the Quartz family, a silicon dioxide mineral with a hardness of 7. Tiger Eye has bands of yellow-brown to golden color, which exhibit chatoyance. The largest deposit of Tiger Eye is in South Arica, and it has also been found in India, Burma, Western Austraila and the USA.
Picture Jasper is a petrified or silicated mud that dripped into gas pockets in molten lava. It became superheated and then solidified forming the unusal banded patterns which are typical of this stone. Picture Jaspter exhibits combinations of patterns, such as banding from flow or depositional patterns resulting in what appears to be scenes or images, on a cut section.
Black Onyx is a powerful gemstone. It is a variety of Chalcedony, a member of the Quartz family with a hardness of 7. Black Onyx is most often made by dying gray Chalcedony in various ways. Onyx was a popular stone of the ancient Greeks and Romans, the name derived from the Greek word onux, meaning fingernail. While fingernails may be the last thing that come to mind in association with Onyx, the ancient Greeks and Romans believed the stone came from the Goddess Venus' fingernails, hence its popularity. Onyx is believed to bring rejuvenation when feeling depleled of energy. Black Onyx shines especially well.
Rhodochrosite is a manganese carbonate mineral with chemical composition MnC03. In its pure form it is typically a rose-red color, with white streaks. Rhodochrosite occurs as a bydrothennal vein mineral along with other manganese minerals in low temperature ore deposits as in the silver mines of Romania where it was first found. Banded rhodocrosite is mined in
Capillitias, Argentina. Catamarca, Argentina has an old Incan silver mine that has produced fine stalactitic examples of Rhodocrosite that are unique and very attractive. Rhodocrosite is Argentina's national gem stone. Colorado officially named Rhodocrosite as its state mineral in 2002. Large specimens have been found in the Sweet Home Mine near Alma, Colorado. The Incas believe that Rhodocrosite is the blood of their former rulers, turned to stone.
Royston is known for its beautiful colors ranging from deep green to rich light blues, set off by a heavy brown matrix or a golden brown matrix. it is also known for the rare blue to green fade that can be found in one rock or cabochon. The Royston district is still producing turquoise of high quality. The Royston district covers several miles of mountain range. Originally the Royston mining district was controlled by Lee F. Hand. The Royston is a mining district in Nevada outside of Tonapah that originally consisted of four old Turquoise claims: Bunker Hill. Easter Blue, Oscar Wehrend, and Royal Blue.The Otteson story began with Lynn Otteson and family. In 1944 Lynn and family came to Nevada to mine turquoise. The Otteson family has owned or leased claims in this district off and on for the past 60 years.
SLEEPING BEAUTY TURQUOISE
The Sleeping Beauty Turquoise mine is located in Globe, Arizona. It derives its name from Little Sleeping Beauty Mountain. In the area and at one time was part of the Copper Cities copper operation. The mine produces a uniform light to medium blue turquoise. The Sleeping Beauty mine has been one of the larger producers of turquoise in the country, although today less good turquoise is being produced than in the past. Sleeping Beauty has never been considered a hard turquoise and it has never been talked about in the same sense as many of the classic Nevada mines. But its beautiful clear blue colors mirror the blue of the sky.
SPINEY OYSTER SHELL
Scientifically called Spondylus vary considerably in appearance and range. From purple to orange, red and yellow. They are grouped in the same superfamily as the scallops, but like the true oysters, they cement themselves to rocks, rather than attaching themselves by a byssus. Their key characteristic is the two parts of their shells are hinged together with a ball-and-socket type hinge, rather than a toothed hinge as is more common in other bivalves. Spondylus have multiple eyes around the edges of their shells, and they have relatively well-devcloped nervous systems. Spiney oyster shells are found in the Gulf of California and the Pacific Coast and South in the warm waters of South America.
Lapis is a sodium aluminum silicate with sulfur, chlorine and hydroxyl, and variable inclusions of Pyrite and White Calcite. Its hardness is 5 to 6 and its crystal system is isometric, mostly aggregate. The ancient Greeks and Romans called the stone sapphirus, until the term Lapis Lazuli began to be used in the Middle Ages. In Latin, the name means "blue stone" and this came from the ancient Persian word lazhward, which meant "blue." The finest Lapis Lazuli comes from the West Hindu Kush mountains of Afghanistan. Other deposits of generally lower quality are in Chili and Russia. Buddhist beliefs recommended Lapis Lazuli as a stone to bring inner peace and freedom from negative thoughts. In Europe Lapis was also thought to cure various illnesses and to be an antidote for snakebite.
Amber is a beautiful stone that is cut and polished and used as a valuable gemstone. It is very light in weight which allows it to be used in a large jewelry piece without discomfort. Amber, or fossil tree sap, has been known since antiquty. A fossil itself, it can contain many preserved insects and other animals and plants that are tens of millions of years old. These frequent fossil inclusions were made famous in the movie "Jurassic Park." The odd inclusions that are often seen in amber usually add to amber's unique look and, in many cases, greatly increase its value. Amber is commonly a yellow color, but it can range in an orange, brown or red color. It is translucent and brittle.