Funny stories about jewellery, gemstones and their collectors…

 

- October 2017 -

One of the great collector, was Evalyn Walsh McLean, who was also the owner of the Hope Diamond. There were reports that Evalyn Walsh McLean misplaced the blue Hope diamond at parties, deliberately and frequently, and then make a children's game out of "finding the Hope", and times when she hid the diamond somewhere on her estate during the "lavish parties she threw and invite guests to find it."

 

Evalyn Mc Lean and diamondsThe stone prompted elaborate security precautions: William Schindele, a former Secret Service man, has been engaged to guard the stone. He in turn will be guarded by Leo Costello and Simeon Blake, private detectives. The stone will be kept at the McLean mansion during the day and each night will be deposited in a safe deposit vault. When Mrs. McLean wears the gem at balls and receptions arrangements have been made to keep the safe deposit building open until after the function that the stone may be safely stored away. A special automobile has been purchased to convey the guards to and from the house to the trust company's building. Report in The New York Times, 1911.


But the stone was not stolen during their ownership. When Mrs. McLean died in 1947, she bequeathed the diamond to her grandchildren through a will which insisted that her former property would remain in the custody of trustees until the eldest child had reached 25 years of age. This requirement would have prevented any sale for the next two decades. However, the trustees gained permission to sell her jewels to settle her debts, and in 1949 sold those to New York diamond merchant Harry Winston. He purchased McLean's "entire jewellery collection". Over the next decade, Winston exhibited McLean's necklace in his "Court of Jewels," a tour of jewels around the United States, as well as various promotional events and charity balls.

Text ©World Luxury Jewellers
Share

Facebook

Twitter

pinterest

LinkedIn WLJ

Share on Google+