Merrill J. Essex

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GG (GIA), Certified Senior Member (NAJA)
Sunday May 26, 2019
1:00 – 2:00 P.M.

“Fossil Amber, An Organic Gem”

The talk will focus on the definition of fossil amber, how, when and where fossil amber was formed historically, where it occurs in the world, its characteristics and colors, what distinguishes fossil amber from look alikes, fossil amber and the fossils it can contain. I will also speak about the historical significance of the Amber Room.

Merrill J. Essex is a certified fine jewelry appraiser and a full-service private jeweler. She is a Graduate Gemologist, Gemological Institute of America and a Certified Senior Member of the National Association of Jewelry Appraisers. She has an undergraduate degree in geology and was going to become a paleontologist until she moved to the Chicago area and instead got an MBA from the Kellogg School at Northwestern.

Merrill runs Essex Estate Services, Ltd., a certified appraisal and estate liquidation firm with her husband and business partner, Richard Meliska. Merrill has experience in both the auction and retail venues and her specialty is estate jewelry. She can appraise, repair, repurpose, refurbish, sell an item, take it apart and sell the components, or source diamonds and gemstones to create new custom designs.

When not obsessing about her passion for “rocks”, Merrill is a member of the Woman’s Club of Evanston, Women Belong, and she’s a patron of the theatre scene, including Steppenwolf and Raven Theatres. She has two grown children living on both coasts who have come to appreciate rocks of all types!