Dan Fagnan shows off the 1.22 carat diamond he found while panning for gold. (Jeff Holmquist/New Richmond News)??A Wisconsin man sifting through mud from a friend's well stumbled across a find that turned out to be a real gem.
Dan Fagnan, of St. Croix County, Wis. was panning for gold flakes in wet mud from a 120-foot well in which his friend had recently drilled.
"Everyone thinks I'm a fruit loop for panning for gold," he told the New Richmond News of his hobby. The newspaper noted the local gold Fagnan finds are often small flakes that don't amount to much.
But something caught his eye on this one particular day, while shifting through wet sand and stone from his friend's deep well.
It was an irregularly shaped, transparent rock that Fagnan initially thought was a piece of glass.
Was he wrong.
A trip to a local jeweler revealed Fagnan had found a rough diamond -- 1.22 carats of it.
Still, the owner of the local jewelry shop, Karen Greaton wanted to confirm, the New Richmond News noted.? So Greaton had it checked by a mineralogist and it was confirmed to be a diamond.
"My dad told me it's unlikely to find a diamond here, but diamonds can actually be found anywhere in the world," Greaton told the newspaper.
One thought is that the diamond reached Wisconsin through volcanic activity from Canada thousands of years ago and pushed south and left in the state after the Ice Age.
Fagnan told the newspaper he was thrilled about what he'd found, and plans to place the stone in a necklace for his soon-to-be-born child.
Some things are just too precious.