The American Museum of Natural History will unveil the Kazanjian Red Diamond for public view on Wednesday, September 22, in the Museum's Morgan Memorial Hall of Gems. The Kazanjian Red Diamond is an extraordinary 5.05-carat red gem, that will be on display at the Museum through Sunday, March 13, 2011.
The original 35-carat piece of rough was discovered in Lichtenburg, South Africa, during the "diamond rush" of the mid-1920s, and then sent to Amsterdam to be cut. After seven months of study, a beautiful emerald cut emerged that under a flickering candlelight, looked as if "a drop of blood fell upon the hand of the cutter." By the onset of World War II, the red diamond was placed in a safe in the city of Arnhem, where it was later seized by the Nazis in 1944 and sent to Germany. US Army General Joseph McNarney found the stone in a salt mine, and believed it to be a ruby. In February, 2007, after 30 years in a private collection, the stone was purchased by Kazanjian Bros. Inc.
Red diamonds are the rarest among colored diamonds. Only three 5-carat red diamonds are known to exist: the Kazanjian Red diamond, the trilliant-cut 5.11-carat Moussaieff Red, and the 5.03-carat De Young Red.
The Kazanjian Red Diamond exhibit is curated by George Harlow, curator in the Museum's Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences.
WHERE American Museum of Natural History, Morgan Memorial Hall of Gems
COST Free with Museum admission