Diamonds occur in two general types of deposits world wide:
The following is not required information for students of EPS 2
The earliest productive mines were in the Golconda region of India, particularly along the Kristna River. After 1725 this mining district was gradually eclipsed in importance by the diamond deposits of Brazil. Diamonds were first mined there along the Jequitinhonha River, in the Diamantina area of the state of Minas Gerais.
In 1867 a 21-carat stone was discovered on the banks of the Orange River near Hopetown, South Africa. A great diamond rush started, and new deposits were discovered that were more productive than any the world had ever known. Another major diamond resource was developed in the 1950s in the Yakutia region of the Soviet Union. By the 1980s the Yakutia and South African regions and the country of Zaire dominated the world's diamond market. The mineral has also been found in smaller amounts in numerous other places. In the United States the leading producers include Arizona, Nevada, and Montana, although the largest gemstones have been found in an eroded volcanic pipe in Pike County, Ark.
For many years, microscopic diamonds have occasionally been noted in meteorites; they were attributed to high-speed collisions in space or with the Earth. In 1987, however, following the discovery of many more such diamonds, the theory was developed that they are the product of ancient supernova explosions of giant stars.
In recent years, diamonds have been found in unusual metamorphic rocks that were subjected to very high temperatures and pressures.