Finders, Keepers

A third diamond has been discovered at the Arkansas Crater of Diamond State Park. A Louisiana man has found a 2.89 carat white diamond on March 6. The Crater of Diamonds State Park is known as the only diamond mine in the United States open to the public, and hundreds of thousands of visitors visit annually to search for diamonds that are under the surface. The diamonds in the Murfreesboro, Arkansas mine have been found in varying shades of white, including yellow.


The mine's most recent discovery was made by Brandon Kalenda of Maurepas, Arkansas. He plans to keep the triangular shaped, metallic looking diamond and has named it the "Jax Diamond" after his infant son Jackson. The Park's "Finders, Keepers" policy has attracted many would-be diamond hunters who are encouraged to look for pockets or layers in the Park's soil for a diamond. Apparently, the ideal time to visit is after a rainfall when the dirt has slid off the diamonds and the ensuing sunlight makes them more visible. 


The diamond is the fourth weighing over 1 carat that has been found since mid-February, and the 47th diamond to be found (registered with the Park) since the beginning of the year. While not all of these diamonds were necessarily valuable, the thrill of finding one and keeping it is definitely worthwhile.  


The first diamond was discovered by a local farmer, John Wesley Huddleston, shortly after he purchased the land in 1906. In 1924, the largest diamond ever found in the U.S., a white gem named the Uncle Sam weighing 40.23 carats, was found on this land too. And in the 1950s, a woman found a 15.33 carat diamond. No sophisticated tools or techniques are required for this mine, as the park recommends searching in the soil on the surface – it only took Brandon Kalenda 20 minutes to find the diamond! Talk about easy money!


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