Silas V. Morefield may not have discovered Amazonite - that credit goes to the Ancient Egyptians or possibly an earlier civilisation. But he did find a significant deposit of the gem in the United States, near a settlement called Amelia, Virginia, about 150 miles south of Washington DC.
- Name: Silas V. Morefield
- Date of Birth: November 6th 1893
- Country of Birth: Westfield, North Carolina, USA
- Date of Death: July 28th 1959 (age 65)
Morefield owned land here, and the story goes that he was out surveying his property when he spotted a large outcrop of Quartz in which a Beryl crystal was embedded. In September 1929, his curiosity peaked, and he drilled a hole into the outcrop, filled it with dynamite and detonated it. The resulting detritus and dust settled to reveal large amounts of mica and the unmistakable green glow of Amazonite.
It wasn’t long before news of the discovery began to spread via word of mouth. Morefield was the proprietor of a fuel stop in the nearby town and decided to display and sell his new Amazonite pieces in his shop. Within just two weeks, and by complete coincidence, workers from the US Geological Survey stopped to refuel at the shop and immediately spotted the gems. They returned to Washington DC with news of the find, and that’s how the wider industry found out about the discovery.