David and I found ourselves in the Smithsonian Natural History Museum a few months ago. We were taken of course by the amazing historical jewels. One stood out more then the others, The Hope Diamond. A 45-carat natural blue blue diamond with a story like no other. We decided to bring a little Hope back to Portland. So if you find yourself downtown, come by and see an exact replica of this intriguing piece of history.
The Hope Story: Mined most likely in India, the legend of the curse began more than 100 years after the diamond arrived in France. During the hectic days of the French Revolution, King Louis XVI and his wife Marie Antoinette lost their heads to the guillotine and the diamond was spirited away by thieves. The stone was re-cut to avoid detection, but such a large and unique diamond could not hide forever.
Almost 20 years after the diamond had gone missing the stone reappeared, which proved to be almost exactly as long as the statute of limitations for stealing the crown jewels. Stories began to surround the diamond almost immediately after it reemerged. The blue diamond had supposedly brought suffering to all who came into possession of it. Cursed or not the Hope Diamond is remembered.
After many sales, including to Henry Philip Hope, a gem collector for whon it was named, it was obtained by Evalyn Walsh McLean of Washington DC, the last private owner. Harry Winston purchased it from her estate in 1949 and presented it to the Smithsonian in 1958 where it remains on permant exhibition.