Girl, 7, discovers large diamond at Crater of Diamonds state park in Arkansas

This article has been updated 24 2023,

A seven-year-old girl discovered a 2.95-carat black diamond while celebrating her birthday at a state park in Arkansas earlier this month.

Aspen Brown made the surprise discovery during a visit to Crater of Diamonds with her father and grandfather on 1 September, according to a statement from the state park.

The precious stone Aspen found is the second-largest registered by a park guest this year, Crater of Diamonds added, noting it was “topped only by a 3.29-carat brown diamond discovered in March”.

It is also the largest diamond registered since the completion of an excavation project at the 911-acre park, situated in Pike County.

“A contracted company dug a 150-yard trench in August to help manage erosion on the north side of the search area,” said Caleb Howell, park “Several tons of unsearched diamond-bearing material were exposed and it’s very possible that this diamond and others were uncovered as a result. “

A park employee said the diamond is among the most beautiful she’s seen in recent years.

As per park policy, guests can name the diamonds they find and the Arkansas-native decided to name the rock after herself.

Her father Luther Brown said it’s the perfect name for the brown diamond because “there was no skill required for her to find it” but instead Aspen was simply in the “right place at the right time”.

Aspen and her family were exploring the north side of the park’s sprawling diamond search area, a 37.5-acre field on the eroded surface of an ancient, diamond-bearing volcano, when she struck gold.

Mr Brown said: “She got hot and wanted to sit down for a minute, so she walked over to some big rocks by the fence line. Next thing I know, she was running to me, saying ‘Dad! Dad! I found one!’”

The size of a green pea, the stone was identified at the park’s Diamond Discovery Centre.

“Aspen’s diamond has a golden-brown color and a sparkling luster. It is a complete crystal, with no broken facets and a small crevice on one side, created when the diamond was formed,” said Waymon Cox, assistant park superintendent.

“It’s certainly one of the most beautiful diamonds I’ve seen in recent years.”

It was discovered around the same place that a park visitor stumbled upon another large diamond, the 3.72-carat Caro Avenger, in 2019.

This year, a total of 563 diamonds have been registered at Crater of Diamonds, totalling around 89 carats, the park said. One to two diamonds are found by visitors to the state park on a daily basis.

Since the first diamond was discovered in 1972 by John Huddleston, a farmer who owned the land before it became the state park, more than 75,000 stones have been found in total.

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