This is the platinum Raymond Yard diamond ring that David Rockefeller used to propose to his wife Peggy in 1940. It sold for $$287,500 at auction Tuesday.
New York--Their family is practically American royalty, and their estate, including a number of jewels, sure sold like they were.

On Tuesday, Christie’s New York auctioned off signed jewelry from the Collection of Peggy and David Rockefeller, capping off a series of sales from the estate of the couple that was one of the last links to the Gilded Age.

David Rockefeller was the youngest and last-surviving grandchild of America’s first billionaire, John D. Rockefeller Sr. He died in March 2017 at the age of 101. Peggy died two decades earlier, in 1996.

The couple’s entire estate went up for auction this spring, with proceeds going to philanthropies they supported during their lifetimes, benefitting scientific research, higher education, support for the arts, sustainable economic development, and land conservation initiatives, among others.

There were 19 lots in Tuesday’s Magnificent Jewels sale from the couple, with the most important jewelry pieces from them including Schlumberger for Tiffany & Co., Raymond Yard and Van Cleef & Arpels, among other houses.

All 19 lots sold, with many outperforming their pre-sale estimates. The top lot of the group was a sapphire and diamond ring by Raymond Yard, realizing $372,500.

The jewelry lots also included the platinum Raymond Yard ring with which David proposed to Peggy in 1940. The ring, set with a cut-cornered rectangular step-cut diamond weighing 5.63 carats and epaulet and triangular-cut diamond shoulders, sold for $287,500--more than double its pre-sale estimate high.

All told, the various sales of The Peggy and David Rockefeller Collection resulted in more than $835.1 million in sales, which Christie’s said is the highest total for a private collection at auction.

It spanned a six-month campaign, 10 days of online sales and three days of auctions at Christie’s Rockefeller Center, putting on offer 19th and 20th century art, furniture, porcelain and more.

Also held on Tuesday, concurrent with the Rockefeller auction, was Christie’s Magnificent Jewels sale, which was 89 percent sold by volume and 95 percent sold by value.

That portion of the auction was led by a ring set with the 20.47-carat old mine brilliant-cut diamond seen below, which garnered $2.7 million.

20180613 Lead diamond

The sale also featured an “exceptional” Burmese ruby ring by Tiffany & Co., given by American composer and lyricist Irving Berlin to his wife Ellin for their 40th wedding anniversary, which sold for $1.2 million.

Also featured in the sale were several other notable private collections--including property from the collection of Steve and Peggy Fossett, the estate of Ruth S. Stanton and property formerly from the collection of Mrs. Douglas Fairbanks Jr.--and lots from top houses like Belperron, Bulgari, Hemmerle, Lalique, Tiffany & Co. and Van Cleef & Arpels.

For a full list of results, visit Christies.com.

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