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The Montana Sapphire: Once Hidden Gem of the Treasure State

Updated: Oct 2, 2020

By Alissa Young, GG

On behalf of Milstead Gems LLC


As the Missouri River winds between rolling mountains dotted with verdant green pine and fir trees, its tumbling waters carry hidden gems. Sometimes referred to as “The Treasure State,” prospectors flocked to Montana in the 1860s in search of valuable gold. Large pebbles clogged the workers’ sluices, making the tedious process of gold mining even more difficult. The unknown stones, initially considered useless waste by the prospectors, were in fact precious sapphires (1). Over the next century and a half, Montana sapphires would rise from their humble beginnings to world renown and appreciation.

montana sapphire mine panorama
The Home of Montana Sapphires and Big Sky!