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List of gemstones found in the USA
Too often we think of Africa as the primary source of high quality gemstones, and while Africa is a significant contributor, some may be very interested to learn how extensive and diverse are the US gem deposits!
As you would probably imagine, many of the gemstones are from the western regions of the US - Colorado, Arizona, and Nevada would rightly guess most people, but the areas of North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas, and even Maine are less well known!
The regular names we associate with gemstones, such as emeralds, rubies, beryl, and sapphires, are all mined in the United States. But there are also many unique stones that are peculiar to the region!
Some of the most important gemstones are listed below and the areas where they are mined:
Main areas for gemstones
- Opals: - These are mostly found in the states of Nevada, Oregon, and Idaho. Black fire opals are found in Virgin Valley, Nevada. Oregon is also famous for its thundereggs and sunstones.
- Rubies: - These are gemstones with a rich red color to them. They're pretty rare. One of the places you can find them is in Franklin North Carolina. There are quite a number of areas mining rubies.
- Jade: - This gem can be found in California and Wyoming. Wyoming in the mid-1930s was named the Jade State.
- Emeralds: - This beautiful gemstone can be found mainly in North Carolina. Some of the rarest and largest emeralds can be found in this state. The Carolina Emperor, which is one of the largest emeralds found in North America, came from North Carolina.
- Turquoise: - This gem is found mainly in Nevada, Arizona and New Mexico. There are a large number of small mines in Nevada in particular
- topaz : - The purest form of a topaz gemstone is clear, but it can also be found in light blue, yellow, brown, and red.
- Tourmaline : - This gemstone also comes in many colored hues. It can be found in Minnesota, California, and New Hampshire.
- Benitoite: - This gem is the State Stone of California, where it can be found. Very rare pale to emerald green gemstone.
- Hiddenite: - This is a light green gemstone and is extremely rare. It is named after a small town in North Carolina. There are other similar gemstones found in other parts of the world, but this is the original.
- Pearls : Pearls are classified as precious stones. The largest natural freshwater pearl industry in the United States is in Tennessee. They use seashells to produce coin-shaped pearls.
In addition to the petrified wood mentioned above, azurite, agate, malachite, and peridot can be found.
Unique to USA gemstones
- Oregon sunstone would be a very good example. Sunstone has beautiful coppery, red, and burnt umber tones and a bright mood that makes it a great choice for jewelry.
- Of particular interest is also Ammolite . This is also known as aapoak and is sometimes marketed under different brands. It is mostly found in the eastern areas of the Rocky Mountains and is unique to the US. Its USA status isn't all that makes it unusual, however! Ammolite is a biogenetic gemstone, which means that it was created through natural life processes through the fossilization of mussels! It comes in many shades, but mostly has a layered structure, green, red, and brown.
- Red Beryl This rare form of beryl is found in the Wah Wah Mountains in Beaver County, Utah
Mining of precious stones
While the US has a good variety of Gem Stone locations, the industry is still relatively small and undeveloped. Commercial production is quite limited. Diamonds, for example, remain the most coveted gem in the U.S. while there are currently no commercial diamond mines in operation. Hence, there is still a heavy reliance on imported gemstones.
Manufacturing in the US is hampered by high labor costs and environmental problems.
A significant portion of US gem funding is run by miners or small commercial businesses with just a handful of employees. This occurs primarily on government land where prospecting permission is given. There are also specially designated gemstone websites where people can pay a fee to search for gemstones.
In the first half of the 20th Century the US was the world's largest producer of tourmaline. Unfortunately this has become more and more expensive and there are no more commercial mines today.
Fine Grades Garnets are still commercially mined in Idaho, and there are three mines that make industrial grenades. More than 11 million tons of industrial garnet, which has many uses, are mined annually.
Although many millions of tons of diamonds are processed annually in the United States, the only active diamond mine is the Crater of Diamonds in Arkansas. However, this is no longer being mined on a large commercial scale.
Interesting Facts About Gemstones In USA.
- In the state of Colorado, the geographic symbols are the national flag colors red (Rhodochrosite), white (Yule Marble) and blue (aquamarine)
- The State of Florida adopted the moonstone gemstone as their state jewel to coincide with their role in the lunar program that allowed men to walk on the moon.
- The Thunderegg is Oregon's State Rock. This jewel is said to have been made by the thunder spirits who lived in the craters where this jewel is formed. The sunstone is Oregon's official gemstone
- In 1991, a single garnet weighing more than 2,800 carats was discovered in Virginia. It was called the Rutherford Lady.
- The largest diamond discovered in the United States is the Uncle Sam Diamond. It originally weighed more than 2,800 carats. It was found at the crater of the diamonds.
- The Dom Pedro, the world's largest cut and polished aquamarine stone, is on display in Houston.
Where to Buy USA Gems
There is a lot to do but where can I buy USA gemstones you may ask? The good news is that there are a number of websites online that sell US gemstones directly to the public, and since the industry is still relatively small, the prices are really competitive!
There are a number of options ranging from loose, high quality stones in velvet necklaces, ideal for jewelry or investments, or you can purchase lower quality stones for collection and general interest that are ideal for children and enthusiasts. There are also a number of websites that offer mounted stones that are made into fine jewelry or an ethnic necklace made from gemstone beads! Delivery in the US by courier or post is available, and a number of websites also offer international shipping.
Remember, when buying for an investment or commissioning a beautiful piece of jewelry, you need to make sure that the store offers certification.
USA is the world's largest consumer of gemstones
More gemstones are sold in the United States than in any other country in the world. Over 99% of these gemstones are imported as very little domestic products are produced. Most gemstones are mined in developing countries .
Diamonds are the most widely traded and shipped gemstones in the United States. They make up nearly $ 18 billion in the gem trade and colored stones only make up about $ 1 billion. One of the reasons for this is that diamonds are traditionally set in engagement rings.
There is also a large market for synthetically produced gemstones. These are made in laboratories and have the same properties as naturally occurring stones. However, these must be clearly labeled as synthetic in the law,
There is also a growing simulant gem market which is glass plastic "gems" etc. They look like gemstones but have completely different properties.
Holidays at Pay to Dig for Gems!
Lastly, for the serious collector or just a fun family vacation, there are several of these mines that you pay to dig.
Emerald Hollow Mine, North Carolina
This is the only emerald mine in the world open to prospectors. It is located near the town of Hiddenites. This is an extremely rare gem and one of the few places on earth that it can be found. They allow you to see and offer education on gemstones as well as a shop that can put gemstones that you can find. LEARN ABOUT THE EMERALD CAVE MINE
Diamond National Park Crater, Arkansas
This park offers the opportunity to hunt for real diamonds. If you find one, keep it. It includes campsites, souvenir shops and restaurants. LEARN ABOUT CRATER DIAMONDS STATE PARK
Cherokee Ruby Mine, North Carolina
This is located in the city of Franklin, which is supposedly the capital of gemstones. You can look for rubies and sapphires. There is accommodation right in front of the mine.
LEARN ABOUT THE CHEROKEE RUBY MINE
After all, gemstones are precious, their colors shine in many bright shards of color. They have been contested, loved, and honored over time. They are both icons in ancient and present times.
SHOP FOR GEMSTONES FROM THE USA
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