Thomas Cullinan (1862 – 1936), prospector and entrepeneur, established the Premier (Transvaal) Diamond Mining Company in Kimberley, South Africa. It was then the largest diamond mine in the world yielding many of the world's most fanous diamonds including the Cullinan rough weighing 3,106ct.
The 253.7-carat Oppenheimer Diamond is in the shape of an octahedron (an eight-sided double pyramid), which is the common shape for diamond crystals. This diamond is 3.8 cm (1.5 in) in height and was discovered at the Dutoitspan Mine near Kimberley, South Africa in 1964. The Oppenheimer Diamond is unusual because diamonds of its size are rarely left uncut. Photo by Chip Clark, Smithsonian Institution.
Mandela salutes the crowd in Galeshewe Stadium, near Kimberley, South Africa, on February 25, 1994, during a three-day campaign swing for the April all-race general election. Photograph by David Brauchli/AP.