How the man who invented frozen French fries came into my life

How the man who invented frozen French fries came into my life

This last week while I was in Utah visiting with my Mama after the death of her husband, she took me to her good friends Jeanne and Stan’s house to see their jewelry studio and their incredible rock collection, that came to them with a great story.


Over 30 years ago they answered an ad from a guy who wanted to get rid of his stash. The collection was over 3 tons of boulders and slabs ready to be cut into incredible cabochons from mines all over but primarily from Montana, Oregon, and Nevada. The seller was J. R. Simplot, a russet potato farmer who made billions off of inventing a way to freeze his potatoes and selling them to McDonalds in 1967 eliminating their supply chain issues with the fresh russet potatoes. His process changed the way that French fries 🍟 were made and by 1972 all fries were frozen.

Apparently, he had no time left for his hobbies and sold his rock collection to Jeanne and Stan for a mere $300! Even 30 years ago this was a steal!

They spent several years selling their beautiful cut stones, sourced from mines all over the US, at the Tucson Gem show but now, retired, they just like to get out there and have fun with their collection.



I couldn’t believe the size of the collection. It was stored all over their yard on various shelves, in buckets on the ground, in crates, and in these heavy duty military drawers that 3 feet long and 4” high and were stacked to the brim with slabs. I can't describe the joy that my brother and I felt opening each one.


Plume Jasper

I couldn’t contain myself and spent over 4 hours with my brother ooohing and ahhhing over everything. They both were very knowledgeable on what they had, where it was from. It was heaven.

I bought an amazing selection of goodies from them and I can’t wait to show you what I got and to make pretty things for you guys. I also hand-selected a big stack of slab that they’ll cut for me over the coming year(s).

Montana agates, picture Jasper, plume agates, turquoise you name it, it’s coming.
Here's a little sneak peek at some of the items I brought home for you guys! If you're interested in anything, book a 1:1 session with me and we can pick out your favorite! Let's make something friends!





Here's a fun video of the experience I posted to Instagram.


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