Feb 15, 2014 11:33 PM by Rebecc Taylor
TUCSON - Diamonds, gems, silver and gold. They're all on display and for sale at this year's Gem and Mineral show which wraps up Sunday.
The gems and minerals on displayed come from six different continents. While many are for sale, some are from private collections rich in fascinating history. Among the displays is jewelry salvaged from 9/11. The owner had a safe deposit box inside Chase Bank.
"After the Twin Towers fell he was able to get into the bank, into the safe deposit box and this is what has survived," Explains Gloria Quigg with the Tucson Gem and Mineral Society.
Incredibly while some of the gold rings are melted, some items also survived the Holocaust. Unless the owner decides to donate them to a museum, this could be the last time they're on display.
Tucson Police Officer Mark Evanoff is paid to keep watch, of two priceless tiaras. He's also learned their history. One is 58 carats, from the 1920s.
"They actually found it in their grandmother's attic," says Evanoff.
It's unknown who the original owner was but it's authentic Cartier. "It was never registered, so they think, maybe wanted to be anonymous. So one of the stories is maybe he bought it for his mistress," says Evanoff.
On the second tiara, instead of diamonds being mounted, each one of the leaves is on a spring.
Another can't miss showcase is filled with crystallized gold, individual pieces are valued upwards of $75,000. Vendor Lois Nelson from California says, "And it's bright, it's beautiful, it's hundreds of times rarer than a nugget."
With this being the show's 60th anniversary, some 18,000 people are expected to attend over the four day event.