Purple Pearl Question

by Ann Sinclair

Someone we know found a pearl way out on Long Island while digging for clams many, many years ago.

After learning about the purple pearl found in Florida we thought we'd see if you could answer a question or two.

Found in a cherrystone the pearl is of a light purple color. The pearl does not look completely round but is large and it looks like it sits in a puddle.

Are all pearls found in clams round? Are they loose in the clam shell? Could this pearl be of any value?

Please respond if you can answer.
A. Sinclair

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Aug 12, 2011
by: Paulette Anderson

Hi, I have a purple Clam pearl and was wondering if anyone could possible tell me where to email pictures to find out it's value. It is a natural light purple with white on the bottom. This pearl is the size of a large pea. It was found in a clam. Very curious about this purple pearl, the clam came from the Northumberland Shores, Nova Scotia!

Apr 18, 2010
the pearl
by: melina

hi my friend gave me a pearl but it was not purple it was white,round,and shiny and it has a orange scratch she said that she has some more at her house about 4 more her names Kaeli. The pearl she gave me is real pretty.

Jan 09, 2008
Leslie's purple pearl
by: Anonymous

Hi, This pearl was in a middleneck clam not a cherrystone or quahog clam. I don't know if there are any other middleneck clam pearls that have been found in Florida. Not all pearls are round, some are button shapped, the round ones are more valuable I was told. This one was in the belly of the clam as it was bit into. Leslie

Jan 07, 2008
by: Erica

Those are great questions.

My feeling is, without those purple clam pearls in the Golash brooch there would be no brooch. And by sounds of it, as value no one knows. There has not ever been any bought or sold to even get an idea of price. You can't go by cultured pearls they are made by man.

Tell someone to go make a natural pearl. They can't. Sounds serious to me. These pearls are RARE--200 known of doesn't sound like many!

Jan 05, 2008
Good Pearl Questions
by: Kari

Hi Ann,

Those are good pearl questions to ask.

All clam pearls are not round, they can be in many shapes and sizes. The preferred shape in pearl is round, so those generally have more value.

The one you mentioned, as looking like it sits in a puddle, sounds very interesting. Pearl designers often prefer unique shapes for their jewelry.

Pearls can be loose or they can be attached to the shell. Those attached are called "blister" pearls.

As for value, to give you an idea, I spoke with a buyer this week who pays $200/carat for nice, round lavender or purple pearls. Price would vary accordingly considering other factors as surface, shape, etc. He pays less for white clam pearls, in the $50-$90/carat range.

Natural pearls are more often sold by weight than by dimensions. A local jeweler could perhaps weigh the pearl for your friend.

There is a famous purple pearl brooch, called the Golash Brooch, which has two purple quahog pearls on it. After that brooch sells it could change the current market value of these natural purple pearls, but folks need to also realize that much of the value in that brooch is in the jewelry piece itself and not the pearls alone.

Thanks for asking!

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