In 2013, whilst on a mining trip in Oregon, Steve came across some of the most remarkable coloured gemstone rough he had ever seen. In a gemstone world where most coloured gemstones undergo some form of enhancement, these all natural Oregon Sunstones were beyond doubt some of the most striking, precious gemstones in the world.
What was unknown to us, however, was what these natural stones were widely known as. Our experience suggested these looked closer to rare transparent labradorites than the natural feldspars known as sunstones we had encountered elsewhere.
Anticipating confusion in the marketplace we looked to establish a naming convention that collectors could understand with ease. In a single name they could understand this was a natural gemstone, a member of the feldspar family, and mined locally in the American West-coast state of Oregon. And so, we chose to name it Lehrite, that name being chosen to pay homage to the person who had led us to it – our good friend, Glenn Lehrer.
Since then we have learned from the miners that Oregon Sunstone, has been and is the accepted and established industry name for the all-natural, highly desired and extremely rare gem labradorite that is currently found and mined only in Lake and Harney counties in south central Oregon, USA.
We’re as passionate about mining communities as we are the gemstones that they discover and mine, and following discussions with the Oregon Sunstone Miners Association we will be now be adopting their naming convention to describe natural, untreated sunstone from this region. Lehrite will henceforth be called Oregon Sunstone.
For those who have already added Lehrite into your collection, nothing has changed. Your naturally coloured gemstone remains as ever: natural, from Oregon and one of the most sought after coloured stones within the collecting community. We will just be referring to this beautiful gemstone from now on as Oregon Sunstone.