Beryl (Var: Morganite)
Little Three Mine (Little 3), Ramona District, San Diego Co., California, USA
Miniature, 4.5 x 2.2 x 3.5 cm
This is a significant locality piece thought to be the best morganite ever found at this mine, which is more known for garnet and schorl than for the very rare beryls that sometimes occur there. It was sold by mine owner Louis Spaulding Jr to dealer Cal Graeber some years ago, and Irv bought it off Cal's desk as it came in. It weighs 53 grams and is complete all around except for a small contacted area on the bottom-left face, and some damage to the upper-right side (some of which seems to have been either frosted or regrown) which is not really that noticeable from the front, anyhow. It has really strange etched growth faces that actually go back into the crystal on one side, while it presents a face on the front that at first glance seems flat but in actuality is a mesmerizing display of subtle surface curves and gradations. It is truly better in person than indicated here. Despite the slight damage, it displays well and is immediately impressive once you realize how amazing it is for the mine of origin. ALSO, THIS PIECE HAS A LOT OF GEM ROUGH VALUE! 4.5 x 2.2 x 3.5 cm