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Welcome to the Spotlight, Ammolite


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“Ammonoid,” paleoartist Heinrich Harder’s (1858-1935) reconstruction of ammonites as they would have appeared. (Image in public domain)

Ammonite–the sea creature which Ammolite comes from–is now extinct, but it’s fossilized remains are finding their way into many new pieces of jewelry. The only gem quality ammolite currently known is in southern Alberta, Canada. It is composed of the same material as natural pearls.
“The International Gem Society estimates that only about five percent of the ammonites found in Alberta have suitable gem material on the shell surface” (Baranstrator). 
Though ammolite is just beginning to make it’s mark in the commercial jewelry industry, it has been used for generations by Native Americans.  The Blackfeet Indians called ammolite the “buffalo stone” because they would often find it on riverbanks resembling the shape a buffalo. 
The most rare and desirable colors of Ammolite are blue and violet, however it is more commonly found in a beautiful spectrum of reds and greens.

Sources:

“Ammolite Gemstone Information.” GemSelect. 16 August 2016. Web. 15 March 2017. <http://www.gemselect.com/gem-info/ammolite/ammolite-gemstone-information-and-education.php>

“Ammolite: The Fashionable Fossil.” GIA. N.d. Web. 1 March 2017. <https://www.gia.edu/ammolite-gem-jewelry>

Branstrator, Brecken. “5 Things to Know About…Ammolite.” National Jeweler. 1 March 2017. Web. 1 March 2017. <http://www.nationaljeweler.com/blog/5188-5-things-to-know-about-ammolite>

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