A Wisconsin man who has been called a "fruit loop" because he likes to pan for gold in unusual places, recently happened upon a treasure even more valuable than gold.
While sifting the wet mud and sand that had been excavated from a friend's newly drilled well, Dan Fagnan of St. Croix County, Wis., encountered what seemed to be an irregular-shaped, transparent rock. Initially, he thought it was a piece of glass, but he had a hunch it may be a diamond.
A trip to his local jewelry shop confirmed that his once-in-a-lifetime find was a genuine 1.22-carat diamond in its natural rough state. Fagnan told the New Richmond News he was thrilled about his good fortune and plans to incorporate the rough stone in a necklace for his soon-to-be-born child. He decided against having the stone faceted because it would lose 60 percent or more of its weight during the cutting process.
According to the New Richmond News, Fagnan had nothing but gold flakes on his mind when he began to inspect the material that was drilled out of the 120-foot-deep hole in his friend's yard.
"Everyone thinks I'm a fruit loop for panning for gold," he told the New Richmond News. After his big score, his critics may start calling him "Diamond Dan."
Diamonds in Wisconsin?
Despite Diamond Dan's good fortune, some of you may be wondering how his 1.22-carat diamond got to Wisconsin in the first place. While diamonds can be found anywhere in the world, they're more likely to be found amidst a kind of rock called kimberlite. Formations of kimberlite pipes occur 93 to 280 miles below the earth's surface. Tectonic forces sometimes push the pipes to the surface, bringing the diamonds with them. Most diamonds mined today are found in the kimberlite, or downstream from a kimberlite deposit.
Being that Fagnan's community is not known to host kimberlite formations, is there another explanation?
Fagnan's jeweler surmised that the diamond originated in Canada and was dragged down to Wisconsin by glaciers during the last Ice Age. When the glaciers receded, the diamond may have been left behind.