My Discovery and Mining of Precious, Deep-Sea Corals in Hawaii
Dr. George Pararas-Carayannis
A Jewelry manufacturing company in Hawaii provides a free one-half hour tour to showrooms where the story on precious corals found in the islands is narrated, including a version of a "story" on the deep-sea, coral known as Pink Coral - also now known as Corrallium Secundum. In this version, the narration omits to credit or report on who, really discovered this precious deep sea coral and successfully mined it and sold it to the company - from which a new and very profitable jewelry industry begun in Hawaii and elsewhere around the world. The present account documents that I was the one who discovered this precious deep sea coral in 1965, then subsequently begun mining it and selling it to jewelry manufacturers in Hawaii, USA, Asia, Europe and Japan. The following is rather detailed account of this discovery and of the many difficulties I faced mining it from great ocean depth. The venture was an arduous and difficult enterprise that seriously endangered my life and, at that time, stretched to extremes my limited financial resources. Also, since my lure for this precious deep-sea coral awakened a desire for other quests around the world in search of other precious stones, a brief summary of such subsequent quests and misadventures is provided.
My discovery of the precious coral took place in 1965 about 12 nautical miles off the southeast coast from Makapuu Point, off the island of Oahu, in Hawaii, where the depth of the ocean was about 1,200 to 1250 feet. It resulted after the reading the proceedings of the famous "Albatross Expedition" and from paying particular attention to a description of the 1907 survey conducted in the vicinity of the Sandwich Islands (Hawaiian Islands). In this segment, there was mention that a small fragment of an unknown coral species was dredged from great depths of the ocean's aphotic zone. Since this coral was unknown and there was no Limnaeus classification for it, the Latin name "Corallium Niveum" ("new coral") was assigned. Also, the brief description stated that this deep-ocean coral had high density and similarities to the precious coral that the ancient Romans obtained from shallower depths in the Adriatic Sea and used it for jewelry. I changed the name of this precious coral from "Pink Coral", to "Angel Skin", because only a small fraction of it was pink, most being slightly pink or white. Most of the coral presently designated as pink by the jewelry industry, is color-enhanced under high pressure and temperature
But first I need to explain the background work that I was doing at the time, which led to my review of the Albatross expedition proceedings and to my subsequent efforts to mine this precious coral from one of the roughest regions in the Pacific - the Molokai Channel - known for high winds, frequent storm waves and strong currents. Mining this coral turned out to be a tortuous ordeal that I would not have ordinarily undertaken, if I had better sense and judgment. But at that time I was still young, foolish and undoubtedly an incurable romantic looking for some form of adventure as well as for a way to make money. So this is the background work that prepared me and led me to this difficult and very risky task.
To Read more, open
ANGELSKIN.pdf (24.8 MB) Compressed Version (1.9 MB)
_________FOR SALE: Cheoye Lee 47" Offshore Yawl; Cascade 42 Sloop (click on images for more information)________