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1990: Diamond State Park Arkansas Is Right Place to Sell Diamonds

May 1998

In what is described as a one-in-10-million find, a visitor to Arkansas’ “Field of Dreams,” Crater of Diamonds State Park came away with 3.03 carat white diamond in October 1990. The diamond, newly cut in New York by Lazare Kaplan International, to a 1.08-carat D Flawless diamond, has been appraised at $33,790, according to Peter Yantzer of the American Gem Society.

The state park is the only known reserve where visitors are permitted to keep what they find.

This particular lucky find was made by Shirley Strawn, 40, of Murfreesboro, Arkansas following a year of persistence driven by her husband’s loss of a job at a local machine shop.

Strawn is said to have almost fainted on realizing the uncut stone was more than 3 carats. She named the stone the “Strawn/Wagner Diamond” to honor her great-great grandfather Lee Wagner, who worked at the Arkansas diamond site decades before it became a state park in 1972.

The Strawns then immediately placed the diamond in a safe deposit box, waiting some seven years for the diamond market to improve and to save enough money to have the diamond cut by LKI, to the tune of $600 per finished carat.

The couple is now waiting once again — for the right price — to sell the stone.

Update: March 9, 2002

The Strawns have sold the diamond to the State of Arkansas. It is on display at the Crater of Diamonds State Park.

Thanks to Matt from Fulton AZ for the update.

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