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Big diamond find for Texan in Arkansas

MURFREESBORO, Ark. (News release) — Sometimes, a small change can change your life. On Friday, August 16, 27-year-old Miranda Hollingshead of Bogata Texas...

MURFREESBORO, Ark. (News release) — Sometimes, a small change can change your life. On Friday, August 16, 27-year-old Miranda Hollingshead of Bogata Texas, visited Arkansas’s Crater of Diamonds State Park for the first time. But according to Hollingshead, that wasn’t her original plan. “I was just going to pick up a transmission that day, but my siblings were in town and wanted to do something fun together.”

Hollingshead, who has known about theCrater of Diamonds for years, decided to go diamond searching when she foundout the park wasn’t too far from her home. “When I realized it was only acouple hours away, I knew we had to go!” What started as a fun family outingbecame the experience of a lifetime when Hollingshead discovered a diamondweighing nearly four carats at the Arkansas State Park.

After searching for about an hour,Hollingshead found the diamond at the base of a hill on the northeast side ofthe park’s 37.5-acre diamond search area. “I was sitting in the shade, watchinga YouTube video on how to find diamonds. I looked over at my kid for a second,and when I looked down, I saw it mixed in with other rocks.”

Miranda Hollingshead holding the 3.72 carat diamond she found

Hollingshead noted she was pretty sureshe had found a diamond when she first saw the stone. “I shook my hand acrossit to make sure what it was, picked it up, and yelled across the field to mymom, ‘I think I got one!’” After showing her mom and siblings, Hollingsheadcarried her find to the Diamond Discovery Center, where park staff registeredit as a 3.72 ct. yellow diamond. It is the largest registered at the Crater ofDiamonds since March 2017, when a teenager from Centerton, Arkansas found a7.44-carat brown gem. It is the largest yellow diamond since a visitor fromOklahoma City found a 3.85-carat jewel there in October 2013.

Park Interpreter Waymon Cox said, “Everydiamond found at the park is beautiful in its own way, and this one iscertainly no exception. It’s about the size of a pencil eraser, with a lightyellow color and a sparkling, metallic luster. Ms. Hollingshead said her gem’sunique shape reminded her of a rounded molar, with a small indentation in oneend.”

Cox pointed out that rainfall likelyplayed a role in Hollingshead finding her diamond. “Much of the ground whereMs. Hollingshead found her diamond is made of unweathered volcanic rock. Whenit rains, flowing runoff often leaves loose gravel, and sometimes diamonds, onthe surface in these areas. Diamonds have a brilliant, adamantine luster thatmakes them easy to spot, and Ms. Hollingshead happened to be sitting in justthe right place to see the diamond sparkle in the sun.”

About one in every 10 diamonds are foundon the top of the ground by observant visitors. Park personnel plow the diamondsearch area, the eroded surface of an ancient, diamond-bearing volcanic pipe,periodically to loosen soil and assist with natural erosion.

Many visitors choose to name the diamondsthey find at Crater of Diamonds State Park. Hollingshead and her son named hergem the Caro Avenger. “He chose the name Caro, and I am a fan of superheroes,so it seemed like a good fit.”

3.72 carat diamond

When asked whether she plans to sell hergem or keep it as a souvenir, Hollingshead said if she doesn’t sell it, she’llprobably have it mounted in a ring. As of this writing, 319 diamonds have beenregistered at Crater of Diamonds State Park in 2019, weighing a total of 63.49carats. 13 diamonds registered this year have weighed at least one carat each.