By Lenore Fedow
The demolition of a former government building in Virginia, Minnesota sent a brick wall crashing down, damaging jewelry manufacturer Strellman’s and several other businesses. (Photo courtesy of Julianne Paulsen)
Virginia, Minn.—Production at jewelry manufacturer Strellman’s in Virginia, Minnesota has been temporarily halted after a construction accident sent pieces of a brick wall crashing through its roof.

The Northland Building, the former headquarters of St. Louis County government, was being demolished last week when a brick wall in an adjacent alley came crashing down, causing structural damage to several businesses on Chestnut Street, according to a local report.

Jim and Julianne Paulsen, owners of Strellman’s Dramatic Jewelry as well as retail store Rocks the Jewelers, reached out to National Jeweler Wednesday to share their story and update customers.

“We are very thankful that our employees were safe during this accident and that no one was injured from the neighboring business affected,” Julianne said in an email to National Jeweler.

The pair witnessed firsthand the wall crashing down onto the Strellman’s building, watching from their store next door as debris and bricks fell through the ceiling.

20191030 Strellmans insertThe factory area of Strellman’s Dramatic Jewelry sustained damage, delaying orders by a couple of weeks.
While reconstruction plans are in the works, the factory is at a standstill and current orders are expected to be delayed by a couple of weeks, Julianne said.

Rocks the Jewelers was spared any major damage, but the store’s holiday stock will be impacted as production is at a halt at Strellman’s.

The factory, covered in dust and debris, isn’t suitable for jewelry-making, explained Julianne. If the wax in the mold isn’t completely clean, the gold will become porous, which leads to pitting.

Founded in 1948, Strellman’s manufactures jewelry for more than 300 retailers throughout the United States.

The retailers have all been contacted, Julianne said, and were “very gracious and understanding.”

There is one retailer facing a hard deadline for a holiday festival, so Strellman’s is working to make sure the show goes on without a hitch.

The office is still open and taking calls, she said, and she encouraged jewelers to continue to place orders.

They are confident in the business’ ability to stand resilient in the face of a setback.

“We are grateful to the jewelry community’s support during this time. Knowing people care brings warmth to our hearts,” Julianne said.

Retailers with questions can contact Strellman’s by phone at 1-800-547-5114 or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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