Kimberley, Northern Cape
Kimberley is the capital and largest city of the Northern Cape Province of South Africa. It is located 110 km east of the confluence of the Vaal and Orange Rivers; the city has considerable historical significance due to its diamond mining past and the siege during the Second Boer War. British businessmen Cecil Rhodes and Barney Barnato made their fortunes in Kimberley, Rhodes established the De Beers diamond company in the early days of the mining town. On September 2, 1882, Kimberley was the first city in the Southern Hemisphere and the second in the world after Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the United States to integrate electric street lights into its infrastructure; the first Stock Exchange in Africa was built in Kimberley, as early as 1881. In 1866, Erasmus Jacobs found a small brilliant pebble on the banks of the Orange River, on the farm De Kalk leased from local Griquas, near Hopetown, his father's farm, he showed the pebble to his father. The pebble was purchased from Jacobs by Schalk van Niekerk, who sold it.
It proved to be a 21.25-carat diamond, became known as the Eureka. Three years in 1869, an 83.5-carat diamond, which became known as the Star of South Africa, was found nearby. This diamond was sold by van Niekerk for £11,200 and resold in the London market for £25,000. Henry Richard Giddy recounted how Esau Damoense, the cook for prospector Fleetwood Rawstone's "Red Cap Party", found diamonds in 1871 on Colesberg Kopje after he was sent there to dig as punishment. Rawstorne took the news to the nearby diggings of the De Beer brothers — his arrival there sparking off the famous "New Rush" which, as historian Brian Roberts puts it, was a stampede. Within a month 800 claims were cut into the hillock which were worked frenetically by two to three thousand men; as the land was lowered so the hillock became a mine – in time, the world-renowned Kimberley Mine. The Cape Colony, Orange Free State and the Griqua leader Nicolaas Waterboer all laid claim to the diamond fields; the Free State Boers in particular wanted the area as it lay inside the natural borders created by Orange and Vaal Rivers.
Following the mediation, overseen by the governor of Natal, the Keate Award went in favour of Waterboer, who placed himself under British protection. The territory known as Griqualand West was proclaimed on 27 October 1871. Colonial Commissioners arrived in New Rush on 17 November 1871 to exercise authority over the territory on behalf of the Cape Governor. Digger objections and minor riots led to Governor Barkly's visit to New Rush in September the following year, when he revealed a plan instead to have Griqualand West proclaimed a Crown Colony. Richard Southey would arrive as Lieutenant-Governor of the intended Crown Colony in January 1873. Months passed however without any sign of the proclamation or of the promised new constitution and provision for representative government; the delay was in London where Secretary of State for the Colonies, Lord Kimberley, insisted that before electoral divisions could be defined, the places had to receive "decent and intelligible names. His Lordship declined to be in any way connected with such a vulgarism as New Rush and as for the Dutch name, Vooruitzigt … he could neither spell nor pronounce it."
The matter was passed to Southey who gave it to his Colonial Secretary J. B. Currey. Roberts writes, he made quite sure that Lord Kimberley would be able both to spell and pronounce the name of the main electoral division by, as he says, calling it'after His Lordship'." New Rush became Kimberley, by Proclamation dated 5 July 1873. Digger sentiment was expressed in an editorial in the Diamond Field newspaper when it stated "we went to sleep in New Rush and waked up in Kimberley, so our dream was gone."Following agreement by the British government on compensation to the Orange Free State for its competing land claims, Griqualand West was annexed to the Cape Colony in 1877. The Cape Prime Minister John Molteno had serious doubts about annexing the indebted region, after striking a deal with the Home Government and receiving assurances that the local population would be consulted in the process, he passed the Griqualand West Annexation Act on 27 July 1877; as miners arrived in their thousands the hill disappeared and subsequently became known as the Big Hole or, more formally, Kimberley Mine.
From mid-July 1871 to 1914, 50,000 miners dug the hole with picks and shovels, yielding 2,722 kg of diamonds. The Big Hole is 463 metres wide, it was excavated to a depth of 240 m, but partially infilled with debris reducing its depth to about 215 m. Beneath the surface, the Kimberley Mine underneath the Big Hole was mined to a depth of 1097 metres. A popular local myth claims that it is the largest hand-dug hole on the world, however Jagersfontein Mine appears to hold that record; the Big Hole is the principal feature of a May 2004 submission which placed "Kimberley Mines and associated early industries" on UNESCO's World Heritage Tentative Lists. By 1873 Kimberley was the second largest town in South Africa, having an approximate population of 40,000; the various smaller mining companies were amalgamated by Cecil Rhodes and Charles Rudd into De Beers, The Kimberley under Barney Barnato. In 1888, the two companies merged to form De Beers Consolidated Mines, which once had a monopoly over the world's diamond market.
Kimberley became the largest city in the area due to a massive African migration to the area from all over t
A chemically pure and structurally perfect diamond is transparent with no hue, or color. However, in reality no gem-sized natural diamonds are perfect; the color of a diamond may be affected by chemical impurities and/or structural defects in the crystal lattice. Depending on the hue and intensity of a diamond's coloration, a diamond's color can either detract from or enhance its value. For example, most white diamonds are discounted in price when more yellow hue is detectable, while intense pink diamonds or blue diamonds can be more valuable. Of all colored diamonds, red diamonds are the rarest; the Aurora Pyramid of Hope displays a spectacular array of colored diamonds, including red diamonds. Diamonds occur in a variety of colors—steel gray, blue, orange, green, pink to purple and black. Colored diamonds contain interstitial impurities or structural defects that cause the coloration, pure diamonds are transparent and colorless. Diamonds are scientifically classed into two main types and several subtypes, according to the nature of impurities present and how these impurities affect light absorption: Type I diamonds have nitrogen atoms as the main impurity at a concentration of 0.1%.
If the nitrogen atoms are in pairs they do not affect the diamond's color. If the nitrogen atoms are in large even-numbered aggregates they impart a yellow to brown tint. About 98% of gem diamonds are type Ia, most of these are a mixture of IaA and IaB material: these diamonds belong to the Cape series, named after the diamond-rich region known as Cape Province in North Africa, whose deposits are Type Ia. If the nitrogen atoms are dispersed throughout the crystal in isolated sites, they give the stone an intense yellow or brown tint. Synthetic diamond containing nitrogen is Type Ib. Type I diamonds absorb from 320 nm, they have a characteristic fluorescence and visible absorption spectrum. Type II diamonds have no measurable nitrogen impurities. Type II diamonds absorb in a different region of the infrared, transmit in the ultraviolet below 225 nm, unlike Type I diamonds, they have differing fluorescence characteristics, but no discernible visible absorption spectrum. Type IIa diamond can be colored pink, red, or brown due to structural anomalies arising through plastic deformation during crystal growth—these diamonds are rare, but constitute a large percentage of Australian production.
Type IIb diamonds, which account for 0.1% of gem diamonds, are light blue due to scattered boron within the crystal matrix. However, a blue-grey color may occur in Type Ia diamonds and be unrelated to boron. Not restricted to type are green diamonds, whose color is caused by GR1 color centers in the crystal lattice produced by exposure to varying quantities of radiation. Pink and red are caused by plastic deformation of the crystal lattice from pressure. Black diamonds are caused by microscopic black or gray inclusions of other materials such as graphite or sulfides and/or microscopic fractures. Opaque or opalescent white diamonds are caused by microscopic inclusions. Purple diamonds are caused by a combination of high hydrogen content; the majority of diamonds that are mined are in a range of pale yellow or brown color, termed the normal color range. Diamonds that are of intense yellow or brown, or any other color are called fancy color diamonds. Diamonds that are of the highest purity are colorless, appear a bright white.
The degree to which diamonds exhibit body color is one of the four value factors by which diamonds are assessed. Diamonds have a color grading system; this system goes from D to Z. The more colorless a diamond is, the rarer and more valuable it is because it appears white and brighter to the eye. Color grading of diamonds was performed as a step of sorting rough diamonds for sale by the London Diamond Syndicate; as the diamond trade developed, early diamond grades were introduced by various parties in the diamond trade. Without any co-operative development these early grading systems lacked standard nomenclature, consistency; some early grading scales were. Numerous terms developed to describe diamonds of particular colors: golconda, jagers, blue white, fine white, gem blue, etc. Refers to a grading scale for diamonds in the normal color range used by internationally recognized laboratories; the scale ranges from D, colorless to Z, a pale yellow or brown color. Brown diamonds darker than K color are described using their letter grade, a descriptive phrase, for example M Faint Brown.
Diamonds with more depth of color than Z color fall into the fancy color diamond range. Diamond color is graded by comparing a sample stone to a master stone set of diamonds; each master stone is known to exhibit the least amount of body color that a diamond in that color grade may exhibit. A trained diamond grader compares a diamond of unknown grade against the series of master stones, assessing where in the range of color the diamond resides; this process occurs in a lighting box, fitted with daylight equivalent lamps. Accurate color grading can only be performed with diamond unset, as the comparison with master
A mineral is, broadly speaking, a solid chemical compound that occurs in pure form. A rock may consist of a single mineral, or may be an aggregate of two or more different minerals, spacially segregated into distinct phases. Compounds that occur only in living beings are excluded, but some minerals are biogenic and/or are organic compounds in the sense of chemistry. Moreover, living beings synthesize inorganic minerals that occur in rocks. In geology and mineralogy, the term "mineral" is reserved for mineral species: crystalline compounds with a well-defined chemical composition and a specific crystal structure. Minerals without a definite crystalline structure, such as opal or obsidian, are more properly called mineraloids. If a chemical compound may occur with different crystal structures, each structure is considered different mineral species. Thus, for example and stishovite are two different minerals consisting of the same compound, silicon dioxide; the International Mineralogical Association is the world's premier standard body for the definition and nomenclature of mineral species.
As of November 2018, the IMA recognizes 5,413 official mineral species. Out of more than 5,500 proposed or traditional ones; the chemical composition of a named mineral species may vary somewhat by the inclusion of small amounts of impurities. Specific varieties of a species sometimes have official names of their own. For example, amethyst is a purple variety of the mineral species quartz; some mineral species can have variable proportions of two or more chemical elements that occupy equivalent positions in the mineral's structure. Sometimes a mineral with variable composition is split into separate species, more or less arbitrarily, forming a mineral group. Besides the essential chemical composition and crystal structure, the description of a mineral species includes its common physical properties such as habit, lustre, colour, tenacity, fracture, specific gravity, fluorescence, radioactivity, as well as its taste or smell and its reaction to acid. Minerals are classified by key chemical constituents.
Silicate minerals comprise 90% of the Earth's crust. Other important mineral groups include the native elements, oxides, carbonates and phosphates. One definition of a mineral encompasses the following criteria: Formed by a natural process. Stable or metastable at room temperature. In the simplest sense, this means. Classical examples of exceptions to this rule include native mercury, which crystallizes at −39 °C, water ice, solid only below 0 °C. Modern advances have included extensive study of liquid crystals, which extensively involve mineralogy. Represented by a chemical formula. Minerals are chemical compounds, as such they can be described by fixed or a variable formula. Many mineral groups and species are composed of a solid solution. For example, the olivine group is described by the variable formula 2SiO4, a solid solution of two end-member species, magnesium-rich forsterite and iron-rich fayalite, which are described by a fixed chemical formula. Mineral species themselves could have a variable composition, such as the sulfide mackinawite, 9S8, a ferrous sulfide, but has a significant nickel impurity, reflected in its formula.
Ordered atomic arrangement. This means crystalline. An ordered atomic arrangement gives rise to a variety of macroscopic physical properties, such as crystal form and cleavage. There have been several recent proposals to classify amorphous substances as minerals; the formal definition of a mineral approved by the IMA in 1995: "A mineral is an element or chemical compound, crystalline and, formed as a result of geological processes." Abiogenic. Biogenic substances are explicitly excluded by the IMA: "Biogenic substances are chemical compounds produced by biological processes without a geological component and are not regarded as minerals. However, if geological processes were involved in the genesis of the compound the product can be accepted as a mineral."The first three general characteristics are less debated than the last two. Mineral classification schemes and their definitions are evolving to match recent advances in mineral science. Recent changes have included the addition of an organic class, in both the new Dana and the Strunz classification schemes.
The organic class includes a rare group of minerals with hydrocarbons. The IMA Commission on New Minerals and Mineral Names adopted in 2009 a hierarchical scheme for the naming and classification of mineral groups and group names and established seven commissions and four working groups to review and classify minerals into an official listing of their published names. According to these new r
South Africa the Republic of South Africa, is the southernmost country in Africa. It is bounded to the south by 2,798 kilometres of coastline of Southern Africa stretching along the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. South Africa is the largest country in Southern Africa and the 25th-largest country in the world by land area and, with over 57 million people, is the world's 24th-most populous nation, it is the southernmost country on the mainland of the Eastern Hemisphere. About 80 percent of South Africans are of Sub-Saharan African ancestry, divided among a variety of ethnic groups speaking different African languages, nine of which have official status; the remaining population consists of Africa's largest communities of European and multiracial ancestry. South Africa is a multiethnic society encompassing a wide variety of cultures and religions, its pluralistic makeup is reflected in the constitution's recognition of 11 official languages, the fourth highest number in the world. Two of these languages are of European origin: Afrikaans developed from Dutch and serves as the first language of most coloured and white South Africans.
The country is one of the few in Africa never to have had a coup d'état, regular elections have been held for a century. However, the vast majority of black South Africans were not enfranchised until 1994. During the 20th century, the black majority sought to recover its rights from the dominant white minority, with this struggle playing a large role in the country's recent history and politics; the National Party imposed apartheid in 1948. After a long and sometimes violent struggle by the African National Congress and other anti-apartheid activists both inside and outside the country, the repeal of discriminatory laws began in 1990. Since 1994, all ethnic and linguistic groups have held political representation in the country's liberal democracy, which comprises a parliamentary republic and nine provinces. South Africa is referred to as the "rainbow nation" to describe the country's multicultural diversity in the wake of apartheid; the World Bank classifies South Africa as an upper-middle-income economy, a newly industrialised country.
Its economy is the second-largest in Africa, the 34th-largest in the world. In terms of purchasing power parity, South Africa has the seventh-highest per capita income in Africa; however and inequality remain widespread, with about a quarter of the population unemployed and living on less than US$1.25 a day. South Africa has been identified as a middle power in international affairs, maintains significant regional influence; the name "South Africa" is derived from the country's geographic location at the southern tip of Africa. Upon formation, the country was named the Union of South Africa in English, reflecting its origin from the unification of four separate British colonies. Since 1961, the long form name in English has been the "Republic of South Africa". In Dutch, the country was named Republiek van Zuid-Afrika, replaced in 1983 by the Afrikaans Republiek van Suid-Afrika. Since 1994, the Republic has had an official name in each of its 11 official languages. Mzansi, derived from the Xhosa noun umzantsi meaning "south", is a colloquial name for South Africa, while some Pan-Africanist political parties prefer the term "Azania".
South Africa contains human-fossil sites in the world. Archaeologists have recovered extensive fossil remains from a series of caves in Gauteng Province; the area, a UNESCO World Heritage site, has been branded "the Cradle of Humankind". The sites include one of the richest sites for hominin fossils in the world. Other sites include Gondolin Cave Kromdraai, Coopers Cave and Malapa. Raymond Dart identified the first hominin fossil discovered in Africa, the Taung Child in 1924. Further hominin remains have come from the sites of Makapansgat in Limpopo Province and Florisbad in the Free State Province, Border Cave in KwaZulu-Natal Province, Klasies River Mouth in Eastern Cape Province and Pinnacle Point and Die Kelders Cave in Western Cape Province; these finds suggest that various hominid species existed in South Africa from about three million years ago, starting with Australopithecus africanus. There followed species including Australopithecus sediba, Homo ergaster, Homo erectus, Homo rhodesiensis, Homo helmei, Homo naledi and modern humans.
Modern humans have inhabited Southern Africa for at least 170,000 years. Various researchers have located pebble tools within the Vaal River valley. Settlements of Bantu-speaking peoples, who were iron-using agriculturists and herdsmen, were present south of the Limpopo River by the 4th or 5th century CE, they displaced and absorbed the original Khoisan speakers, the Khoikhoi and San peoples. The Bantu moved south; the earliest ironworks in modern-day KwaZulu-Natal Province are believed to date from around 1050. The southernmost group was the Xhosa people, whose language incorporates certain linguistic traits from the earlier Khoisan people; the Xhosa reached the Great Fish River, in today's Eastern Cape Province. As they migrated, these larger Iron Age populations
Federal Bureau of Investigation
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is the domestic intelligence and security service of the United States, its principal federal law enforcement agency. Operating under the jurisdiction of the United States Department of Justice, the FBI is a member of the U. S. Intelligence Community and reports to both the Attorney General and the Director of National Intelligence. A leading U. S. counter-terrorism, counterintelligence, criminal investigative organization, the FBI has jurisdiction over violations of more than 200 categories of federal crimes. Although many of the FBI's functions are unique, its activities in support of national security are comparable to those of the British MI5 and the Russian FSB. Unlike the Central Intelligence Agency, which has no law enforcement authority and is focused on intelligence collection abroad, the FBI is a domestic agency, maintaining 56 field offices in major cities throughout the United States, more than 400 resident agencies in smaller cities and areas across the nation.
At an FBI field office, a senior-level FBI officer concurrently serves as the representative of the Director of National Intelligence. Despite its domestic focus, the FBI maintains a significant international footprint, operating 60 Legal Attache offices and 15 sub-offices in U. S. consulates across the globe. These foreign offices exist for the purpose of coordination with foreign security services and do not conduct unilateral operations in the host countries; the FBI can and does at times carry out secret activities overseas, just as the CIA has a limited domestic function. The FBI was established in 1908 as the Bureau of the BOI or BI for short, its name was changed to the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 1935. The FBI headquarters is the J. Edgar Hoover Building, located in Washington, D. C. In the fiscal year 2016, the Bureau's total budget was $8.7 billion. The FBI's main goal is to protect and defend the United States, to uphold and enforce the criminal laws of the United States, to provide leadership and criminal justice services to federal, state and international agencies and partners.
The FBI's top priorities are: Protect the United States from terrorist attacks Protect the United States against foreign intelligence operations and espionage Protect the United States against cyber-based attacks and high-technology crimes Combat public corruption at all levels Protect civil rights, Combat transnational/national criminal organizations and enterprises Combat major white-collar crime Combat significant violent crime Support federal, state and international partners Upgrade technology to enable, further, the successful performances of its missions as stated above In 1896, the National Bureau of Criminal Identification was founded, which provided agencies across the country with information to identify known criminals. The 1901 assassination of President William McKinley created a perception that America was under threat from anarchists; the Departments of Justice and Labor had been keeping records on anarchists for years, but President Theodore Roosevelt wanted more power to monitor them.
The Justice Department had been tasked with the regulation of interstate commerce since 1887, though it lacked the staff to do so. It had made little effort to relieve its staff shortage until the Oregon land fraud scandal at the turn of the 20th Century. President Roosevelt instructed Attorney General Charles Bonaparte to organize an autonomous investigative service that would report only to the Attorney General. Bonaparte reached out to other agencies, including the U. S. Secret Service, for personnel, investigators in particular. On May 27, 1908, the Congress forbade this use of Treasury employees by the Justice Department, citing fears that the new agency would serve as a secret police department. Again at Roosevelt's urging, Bonaparte moved to organize a formal Bureau of Investigation, which would have its own staff of special agents; the Bureau of Investigation was created on July 26, 1908, after the Congress had adjourned for the summer. Attorney General Bonaparte, using Department of Justice expense funds, hired thirty-four people, including some veterans of the Secret Service, to work for a new investigative agency.
Its first "Chief" was Stanley Finch. Bonaparte notified the Congress of these actions in December 1908; the bureau's first official task was visiting and making surveys of the houses of prostitution in preparation for enforcing the "White Slave Traffic Act," or Mann Act, passed on June 25, 1910. In 1932, the bureau was renamed the United States Bureau of Investigation; the following year it was linked to the Bureau of Prohibition and rechristened the Division of Investigation before becoming an independent service within the Department of Justice in 1935. In the same year, its name was changed from the Division of Investigation to the present-day Federal Bureau of Investigation, or FBI. J. Edgar Hoover served as FBI Director from 1924 to 1972, a combined 48 years with the BOI, DOI, FBI, he was chiefly responsible for creating the Scientific Crime Detection Laboratory, or the FBI Laboratory, which opened in 1932, as part of his work to professionalize investigations by the government. Hoover was involved in most major cases and projects that the FBI handled during his tenure.
But as detailed below, his proved to be a controversial tenure as Bureau Director in its years. After Hoover's death, the Congress passed legislation that limited the tenure of future FBI Directors to ten years. Early homicide investigations of the new age
Tiffany Yellow Diamond
The Tiffany Yellow Diamond is one of the largest yellow diamonds discovered. The facet pattern features eight needle-like facets pointing outward from the culet facet. Jewelry and diamond historian Herbert Tillander refers to this as a'stellar brilliant cut', lists the gem in his book "Diamond Cuts in Historic Jewelry - 1381 to 1910" among other such diamonds: The Cullinan Diamond, The Koh-I-Noor, the Polar Star, the Wittelsbach, among others. Discovered in South Africa in 1877, the stone was purchased by New York jeweler Charles Tiffany, his gemologist, George Frederick Kunz, studied the gem for a year before beginning to cut it. The cutting was carried out in Paris. Kunz was a mere 23 years old at the time, it was mounted by Jean Schlumberger. In 1879, the Tiffany branch in Paris obtained the Tiffany Diamond, which weighed 287.42 carats in the rough. It was the largest yellow diamond found up to that time; the task of supervising the cutting of this stone was the responsibility of one George Frederick Kunz, a twenty-three-year-old gemologist who had just joined the firm.
Kunz added an additional 32 facets to the accepted square antique brilliant cut, bringing the total to ninety. The result is an scintillating cut. Large diamonds of comparable brilliance were not fashioned until well into the 20th century; the gem was on loan from Tiffany & Co. to the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D. C. from April 18, 2007, until September 23, 2007. At the time, Jeffrey E. Post, the museum`s gem curator, said that this was the largest diamond on display in the U. S; the famous Hope Diamond is only 45.5 carats, about one-third the mass of the Tiffany Yellow Diamond. The diamond is known to have been worn by only three women during its lifetime, it was worn by Mrs. E. Sheldon Whitehouse at the 1957 Tiffany Ball held in Newport, Rhode Island, mounted for the occasion in a necklace of white diamonds, it was subsequently worn by Audrey Hepburn in 1961 publicity photographs for Breakfast at Tiffany's. In 2019, Lady Gaga wore the diamond at the 91st Academy Awards.
Golden Eye Diamond Diamond color Nassak Diamond
De Beers Group is an international corporation that specialises in diamond exploration, diamond mining, diamond retail, diamond trading and industrial diamond manufacturing sectors. The company is active in open-pit, large-scale alluvial and deep sea mining, it operates in 35 countries and mining takes place in Botswana, South Africa and Canada. Until the start of the 21st century, De Beers had total control over the diamond market as a monopoly. Competition has since dismantled the complete monopoly, though the De Beers Group still sells 35% of the world's rough diamond production through its global sightholder and auction sales businesses; the company was founded in 1888 by British businessman Cecil Rhodes, financed by the South African diamond magnate Alfred Beit and the London-based N M Rothschild & Sons bank. In 1926, Ernest Oppenheimer, an immigrant to Britain and South Africa who had earlier founded mining company Anglo American plc with American financier J. P. Morgan, was elected to the board of De Beers.
He built and consolidated the company's global monopoly over the diamond industry until his death in 1957. During this time, he was involved in a number of controversies, including price fixing and trust behaviour, was accused of not releasing industrial diamonds for the U. S. war effort during World War II. In 2011, Anglo American took control of De Beers after buying the Oppenheimer's family stake of 40 percent for US$5.1 billion and increasing its stake to 85 percent, ending the 80-year Oppenheimer control of the company. In 2018, De Beers became the first diamond company to announce that it would track its diamonds using blockchain technology, though this technology has not yet been rolled out; the name'De Beers' was derived from the two Dutch settlers and brothers Diederik Arnoldus De Beer and Johannes Nicolaas De Beer, who owned a South African farm named Vooruitzicht near Zandfontein in the Boshof District of Orange Free State. After they discovered diamonds on their land, the increasing demands of the British government forced them to sell their farm on July 31, 1871, to merchant Alfred Johnson Ebden for £6,600.
Vooruitzicht would become the site of the Big Hole and the De Beers mine, two successful diamond mines. Their name, given to one of the mines, subsequently became associated with the company. Cecil Rhodes, the founder of the British South Africa Company, got his start by renting water pumps to miners during the diamond rush that started in 1869, when an 83.5 carat diamond called the'Star of South Africa' was found at Hopetown near the Orange River in South Africa. He invested the profits of this operation into buying up claims of small mining operators, with his operations soon expanding into a separate mining company, he soon secured funding from the Rothschild family. De Beers Consolidated Mines was formed in 1888 by the merger of the companies of Barney Barnato and Cecil Rhodes, by which time the company was the sole owner of all diamond mining operations in the country. In 1889, Rhodes negotiated a strategic agreement with the London-based Diamond Syndicate, which agreed to purchase a fixed quantity of diamonds at an agreed price, thereby regulating output and maintaining prices.
The agreement soon proved to be successful — for example, during the trade slump of 1891–1892, supply was curtailed to maintain the price. Rhodes was concerned about the break-up of the new monopoly, stating to shareholders in 1896 that the company's "only risk is the sudden discovery of new mines, which human nature will work recklessly to the detriment of us all"; the Second Boer War proved to be a challenging time for the company. Kimberley was besieged as soon. Rhodes moved into the city at the onset of the siege in order to put political pressure on the British government to divert military resources towards relieving the siege rather than more strategic war objectives. Despite being at odds with the military, Rhodes placed the full resources of the company at the disposal of the defenders, manufacturing shells, defences, an armoured train and a gun named Long Cecil in the company workshops. In 1898, diamonds were discovered on farms near Transvaal. One led to the discovery of the Premier Mine.
The Premier Mine was registered in 1902 and the Cullinan Diamond, the largest rough diamond discovered, was found there in 1905. However, its owner refused to join the De Beers cartel. Instead, the mine started selling to a pair of independent dealers named Bernhard and Ernest Oppenheimer, thereby weakening the De Beers stronghold. Francis Oats, who became Chairman of De Beers in 1908, was dismissive of the threats from the Premier mine and the finds in German South West Africa. However, production soon equalled all of the De Beers mines combined. Ernest Oppenheimer was appointed the local agent for the powerful London Syndicate, rising to the position of mayor of Kimberley within 10 years, he understood the core principle that underpinned De Beers' success, stating in 1910 that "common sense tells us that the only way to increase the value of diamonds is to make them scarce, to reduce production". During World War I, the Premier mine was absorbed into De Beers; when Rhodes died in 1902, De Beers controlled 90% of the world's diamond production.
Ernest Oppenheimer took over the chairmanship of the company in 1929, after buying shares and being appointed to the board in 1926. Oppenheimer was concerned about the discovery of diamonds in 1908 in German South West Africa, fearing that