Esperenza Gets a Shape: Arkansas Most-Valuable Diamond Has Been Cut

One of the largest rough diamonds found in Arkansas has recently been crafted in the shape of a teardrop.

The diamond, which weighs 8.52 carat was found at the Crater of Diamonds State Park.

It’s the fifth-largest diamond found in the park since park’s establishment in 1972.

The stone was found by Bobbie Oskarson, a Colorado native, on June 24. As it was hers to keep, she named it ‘Esperenza’.

American Gem Society (AGS) member Mike Botha was invited to shape the diamond during an event in North Little Rock, Ark.

Botha said he has lost count of the number of diamond’s he has cut and polished but cutting Esperenza in its home state is a lifetime opportunity.

“This is probably the most valuable diamond ever found in the United States, so from that perspective, it’s an honor.”

The diamond is not the largest in North America but is one of the most important diamonds in the region, he added.

He first studied the diamond to come up with the base designs. The whole process took about a month. He chose a 147-facet triolette shape, resembling a teardrop, for the transformation of this particular stone.

The cutting process took around 50 hours i.e. from Sep 9 to Sep 15.

The diamond is a type ‘2A’ with zero nitrogen, which made it harder to cut, Botha said.

According to Stanley Jewelers Gemologist Vice President Laura Stanley, the cut was a ‘resounding success’.

Esperenza will now undergo a final grading report. The diamond cutter expects the report to be of very high clarity, colourless and internally flawless.

Jewelry appraiser Neil Beaty, of Denver, says the Esperanza could fetch anywhere from around $200,000 to well over $750,000.


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