20th-Century Sapphire & Diamond Ring

Value (2010) | $10,000 Auction$12,000 Auction

It belonged to the Lee Meriwether estate. And my great-uncle was his publisher and my great-aunt ran his house. They lived there. They lived on, like, the third floor, fourth floor, I'm not sure. And so when they died, my grandmother inherited that estate. And when my grandmother was not at her home anymore, we went out there and went through her house. And my daughter-in-law said, "I think I'm going to look through those old purses." So there was a stack of black purses in the closet. She went through them and she found this ring. And she said, "I found you something! I found you something!"

Oh, how great.

So, I've had it and just kept it and didn't know where to take it to have it looked at. So my grandson said, "Let's go to the Roadshow."

You told me that your grandmother thought it was from the Civil War. Well, let's dispel that story. It's not from the Civil War. They didn't do platinum jewelry or white gold jewelry during that period. It would have been in yellow gold. And from the diamonds, the cut of the diamonds and the material, I'm going to say that it's from the 1920s. They're sort of transitional cuts. They're not wonderfully cut, but they're of that period in the '20s. But this ring has had many things done to it. It's actually not the original shank. If I turn it to the side, you can see that this has been added. This is later, and this is in white gold. White gold came into being in the 1914s. We wouldn't have white gold before that. But this is later; it's probably done in the 1950s. Now, the stone. It measures I would say between 10 and 12 carats and it's actually a sapphire that probably comes from Ceylon. And it's a pretty nice stone. It's got a nice cut, it's a nice shape, but it's mounted crooked. If you look at it, this should be a vertical stone. It should not be the way it is. So, it's hard to tell if this was a ring originally or a brooch. But you know what's going to happen to this as time goes on if it doesn't stay in the family and it gets sold? Somebody will remount it, do it vertically and polish it, and it will be a gorgeous-looking sapphire. I'm going to say, in the market today, if you had to sell it, let's say in an auction venue, between $10,000 and $12,000.


So, I think something that was in a purse that's had this history...

That's unbelievable, absolutely.

I think you did really well and I'm so glad you came to the show today.

Thank you.

Appraisal Details

Skinner, Inc.
Boston, MA
Appraised value (2010)
$10,000 Auction$12,000 Auction
Biloxi, MS (July 24, 2010)

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