Alumni Chapter

Washington – Seattle Chapter: Cheapside Hoard Tales with Hazel Forsyth

The Seattle Chapter invites alumni and industry friends to join an extraordinary evening with one of the world’s most noted jewelry curators and historians - Hazel Forsyth.

Visiting from the Museum of London, Forsyth is the senior curator of the Cheapside Hoard, a magnificent bounty of gem, mineral and jewelry treasures that survived 300 years in hiding until its discovery, in 1912.
The indisputable authority on the Cheapside Hoard, Hazel Forsyth has provided extensive insight into the understanding of its contents through scientific and historical research, has authored a book on the collection and continues to make new discoveries through advanced forensics. It is also due to her collaboration that GIA was able to photograph and feature the remarkable story and treasures of the hoard in GIA’s Gems & Gemology; Fall 2013, Vol. 49, No. 3 – journal issue, available to view online.

The evening will include an educational presentation, lavish appetizers and cocktails from the award-winning culinary team of the Cedarbrook Lodge, and the opportunity to network with prominent historians, dealers, collectors and appraisers of estate jewelry and world-class presenters - all participating in the 2018 Northwest Jewelry Conference.
History of the Cheapside Hoard:
On Tuesday, June 18, 1912, in London’s fabled jewelry district a workman’s pickax broke through the cellar floorboards at 30-32 Cheapside Street to reveal one of the World’s most remarkable finds of buried treasure – a time capsule from the Elizabethan era.   Much of the contents, nearly 500 pieces in all, were in remarkable condition considering they had survived nearly 300 years, including the Great London Fire of 1666. 

Emeralds and gold from the New World, spinel from Ceylon, rubies from Burma, Indian diamonds, and Persian turquoise demonstrated a global trade in jewelry and gems that has been well-researched by Hazel Forsyth, curator of the hoard for the London Museum and author of London’s Lost Jewels: The Cheapside Hoard. According to Forsyth, workers were said to have lined their pockets with goods which may have been lost to history had it not been for their dealings with a local antiquities dealer/pawnbroker George “Stoney Jack” Lawrence who regularly offered cash or beer for their finds.


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