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Ruby - Uncut - North Carolina - 1970s Value Help


Does anyone know what the value of this may be? My mother and I got it in North Carolina along with several other various types of gemstones back in the 70s. Its uncut and weighs 13.98 ounces a little under a half inch long, and is almost diamond hardness when using my tool to grade hardness of the stone. This has been in my family since we found it panning.![15|535x435]



Sorry to say but the ruby is not gem quality at all, my only suggestion is you could try and have it heat treated and then see if you can find any small sections of the crystal that are gem quality, other than that it is just a ruby crystal specimen that is not worth much.


Hi thanks for your reply How do you know if its not gem quality? I am curious as I’ve not collected before and just now putting my feelers out to learn. I had one guy locally estimate it at 600 I thought that was way too low considering the size of this ruby. I thought if I had it cut if I could get a nice carat or two out of it then its worth more.


not sure I agree with heat treating my stone though many things I am reading elude that its much more valuable if left untreated. I’m still researching and gathering opinions. Thank you
What Are The Ruby Treatments?
A treated Ruby is not a bad thing. Less than 1% off all Rubies that are recovered from the ground actually make it to the market without any treatment. These are the most precious and value Rubies available. If they did not treat Ruby gemstones, 99% of the Ruby would never make it to the market. That means the average person may never see a Ruby in their whole life if it was not for treatments.
Untreated Ruby
By far the rarest and most valuable Ruby gemstone. These stones ave been mined out of the ground, cut and polished and presented to the market. No other process apart from cutting and polishing has been performed on these Rubies.


I only suggested heat treatment as it may enhance some sections of the ruby to give you a clean piece that may be worth cutting. as it stands there does not appear to be any quality about the gem.
In saying that there may be a clean piece in the crystal somewhere always a small possibility, but to find out you would need to smash it up or slice it into sections (both ways are a risk if there is a clean piece in the middle of the gem, as you may slice through it with the diamond saw as well) still the best way to go is to heat treat the ruby. to try and get something out of it.
yes unheated gemstone is more valuable. 1 carat good quality gem treated can be 4,000 to 5,000 retail unheated 6,000 to 8,000 retail,
but at present in my opinion (only looking at the photo’s is not worth much except as a specimen)


thank you… what does a specimen that may hold carat value look like? can you please post some pictures or links so I can learn the differences?


Gem grade ruby rough is rich red color and transparent like glass. Photos are of ruby rough from Gemfields Montepuez mine in Mozambique.


By sight, this is probably a pink/purple sapphire rather than a ruby by color. In addition, as far as we can see it has many impurities and pits and is more opaque than translucent, let alone transparent. Gem quality ruby is transparent enough to facet and exhibit light return from the rear facets. Is it possible that there is a section internally that is transparent? Yes, but it is unlikely, or the people that ran the mine would have been mining these and sawing them all up to look for the transparent areas. If you will look on ebay for ruby specimen, you’ll see lots of this material for sale for about 50 cents a carat or so. I don’t see any right now that are as large as yours, so perhaps it is worth a bit more per carat than that. However, you will see that there is a lot of it for sale, so it is not rare. While it is usually risky to ID by sight, this is one case where the opacity and the inclusions are pretty apparent and disqualify this as gem quality. Sorry. A nice souvenir and specimen ruby from the Cowee Valley, though.


Hi I am often one to say (IMO) there is no Gem grade rough in these photos and i do not think there is but if you are still curious about what may be inside you do not have to plow through it with a saw just take a flat side to a flat lap. polish a window into the stone do this on 2 or more sides and hold the stone to a bright light . Odds are in this piece you will not see much . What to do with it if you cant see any good stuff inside do not just toss it in a drawer . I glue them to the front of a drawer for a handle or set it into a tool handle. I have a burisher and a chuck key with large wooden handles glued on them ( so they do not get “lost” on my bench) and over time they have been encrusted with leaverite . Good luck and have fun .


That’s beautiful is this untreated or treated?


yes there is if I hold it up to the light


I did see those on Ebay but all from another country. I was told mine is more rare because of the location and time era in which we panned for them. I have others but this one stood out to me I will share a few other stones of interest but you maybe right perhaps its a pink/purple sapphire but then why would it be of diamond hardness if it were just a sapphire. If its not worth much I will just have it fashioned into a nice piece of jewelry for me to proudly wear :smiley:


Ok I don’t have professional tools so this is the best I can do for now to get some light shining through it using my little light powered micr

oscope. I included a few other smaller specimens also


And you are right the more I learn and inspect this the more it absolutely does lean more toward a Pink Sapphire in color although it does measure a 10 in hardness in most spots and others a 9


Well, strictly, it isn’t opaque if you can get light through it, but it isn’t very translucent and my point was that gem quality, facetable corundum is transparent to mostly transparent. All corundum, sapphire and ruby, is hardness 9 on the simple Mohs scale. There is some differential hardness depending on orientation, which may be what you are measuring…some planes are harder than others. As far as provenance influencing value for a specimen of this type, I’m not aware of it, but perhaps. All considered, I do not think it is worth a lot, but that’s a gemologist’s view. You might want to consult some mineral collectors. As far as I know, there is lots of this stuff, even from NC.



Sorry to say But I Totality Agree with SydP.
#1.It has NO clarity
#2.highly included
#3.Is just a specimen
#4.Little to no value
Hope this helps some.Study gems and you can tell the difference between gem and rock


thanks for all the education guys I appreciate it…


One more thing… (I agree that it is NOT gem quality. It is an OK specimen). If it is a half inch long, I don’t see how it could possibly ounces that you are weighing. It must be grams, and as such, is a rather nice, but monetarily insignificant specimen.


yes that’s a typo it’s grams see pic below