Restoring the Ring of GIA founder Robert M. Shipley- A Father’s Legacy

June 12th, 2010 by James L. Sweaney, CGA, FGA. GG
Robert M. Shipley, Courtesy of GIA Library

Robert M. Shipley, Courtesy of GIA Library

We thought this would be a great post the week before Father's Day.

Often at Mardon Jewelers, we're asked to perform an expert service by a client. Such was the case recently when we restored the ring that originally belonged to Robert M. Shipley, the founder of GIA.

Early in his career, Mr. Shipley realized that the lack of good information about gems was a real problem for the jewelry industry. Without a good base in the science of gems, many jewelers of the time perpetuated misinformation, like using the trade term “Smoky Topaz”– a misnomer for a different mineral entirely, Smoky Quartz, that we still hear even today.

Shipley studied gemology in Great Britain, graduating as the first American FGA,

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