Ammolite Origin

The story of Ammolite begins over 65 million years ago during the Cretaceous period when dinosaurs ruled the earth, Pterosaurs glided overhead in the skies, and the oceans teamed with an enormous variety of aquatic life including ammolites and baculites. Accompanied by tropical climates, the continents were evolving into the shapes and global positions we are familiar with today. During this time the interior of North America was partially submerged under the warm shallow Bearpaw Sea which bordered the developing Rocky Mountains. Today part of this region is south eastern Alberta, Canada.


Living in the Bearpaw Sea were many exotic creatures like Plesiosaurs which "flew" through the water like penguins as they diligently fished the shallow waters. In addition to such "monsters" were ancestors of modern sea life such as sharks and turtles. One such ancestor were the ammonites, the predecessor to Squids and the south Pacific Nautilus.

Ammonites were squid-like creatures with coiled shells containing gas filled chambers which provided buoyancy. Like modern Squids and Nautiluses, they propelled themselves through the water with a "jet" and when threatened, clouded the water with ink during their escapes. Ammonites needed such speed and defense as they were favored as a delicacy by Mosasaurs, another predacious marine reptile.


Sinking it's peg-like teeth into the coiled shell, a ravenous Mosasaur would extract the Ammonites squid-shaped body and devour it, discarding the empty Ammonite shell which then sank to the sea floor. This is where fortunate circumstances came together to create specific conditions for the next step in the birth of a Ammolite gemstone.

Settling on the sea bottom, the empty Ammonite shell was buried in mineral-rich sediment carried there by rivers and streams from the young Rocky Mountains. During the fossilization process the sediment not only preserved the shell but also enhanced the shell's colors into iridescent greens, reds, yellows, and rare blues and violets. In 1981, the International Colored Gemstone Commission (ICGC) recognized this new organic gemstone as Ammolite. With finite supply in a very specific area and only one in a hundred of the preserved shells yielding few gemstones, Ammolite is the rarest gemstone in the world!

Long before Europeans arrived in North America and the ICGC recognition, Ammolite was known as "Iniskim" by the Native societies. It was, and is honored as a powerful talisman and has it's own Traditional Legend.