In 1967, Scottish gemologist Campbell R. Bridges discovered a beautiful green gemstone in northern Tanzania. After performing tests, he classified it as Grossularite, a rare member of the Garnet family. Unfortunately, shortly after discovering the gem, the Tanzanian government nationalised all mines and Bridges was forced to leave the country.
- Name: Campbell R. Bridges
- Date of Birth: 25th August 1937
- Country of Birth: Scotland, UK
- Date of Death: 11th August 2009 (age 71)
Not a man known to give up, and with Tiffany & Co having already shown interest in the gem, Bridges traced the Grossularite vein north across the Tanzanian border and into Kenya. In 1971, after searching for the prized Garnet for over a year, he rediscovered it beneath Kenya's Tsavo National Park. Bridges resided in treetops to protect his find, using a pet python to guard the gems, and was finally able to register the deposit and obtain permission to officially mine the jewel. In 1974, Bridges and Tiffany & Co president Henry Platt agreed that the gem should be named after the park in which it was found, hence the name Tsavorite.
Tragically, Bridges was murdered in 2009 by a group of men due to a dispute over mining near the town of Voi, Kenya. His legacy continues through the beautiful gemstones he brought to the world and through his son Bruce.