The South Sea Pearl, one of nature’s most beautiful gifts, has always been steeped in romance and tradition. The lure of its beauty and potential for wealth has been the inspiration for entrepreneurs and adventurers alike.
In 1887, 18yr old Thomas Bastian Ellies sailed from the island of Ceylon, crossing the vast Indian ocean to arrive on the north west coast of Australia, origin of the giant pinctada maxima pearl oyster. The only coloured man amongst his peers TB, as he became more fondly known, was respected and admired as the founding father of Australia’s pioneering pearling years. He built a fleet of timber luggers and employed 100’s of divers to scour the ocean beds hand picking oysters in search of the holy grail, a natural pearl. His contribution to these early years earnt Ellies global recognition as the source of fine and rare pearls.
Five generations later the Ellies families rich 135yr connection to growing the world’s finest pearls remains unrivalled.