By Don Knox, STATE BILL COLORADO
A few weeks ago, it was mastadons in ritzy Snowmass Village. Now, somebody’s dug up Colorado’s “Key to the State.”
Never heard of it? Neither had we, until the governor’s office released Gov. Bill Ritter’s Tuesday schedule. At 11 a.m., he’ll unveil the key, which has been in storage at the Colorado History Museum for a quarter-century. It’ll be on permanent view somewhere in the Capitol rotunda, Ritter spokeswoman Myung Oak Kim said.
“It’s a ceremonial thing — not something that opens a door,” Kim said. “Apparently all states have one of these, a lot of cities have them. They don’t have a practical use. … This is the first time it’ll be displayed publicly.”
An Internet search revealed that the key was made by locally based Hyde Park Jewelers. It was designed by Philip Stone, “a master jeweler who studied at the Sir John Cass School of Art in London, England, where he was trained by Cartier jewelers,” according to JCK Online.
A Hyde Park representative sent us the news release, published below.
According to Hyde Park, the key is made of three ounces of 14 carat yellow gold, one ounce of 18 carat yellow gold, 1.5 ounces of sterling silver, 2.6 carats of yellow sapphires, 2.7 carats of blue sapphires and 4.75 carats of round brilliant diamonds. A total of 55 hours of labor went into the work, which incorporates Colorado snowcap mountains and the state seal.
Tuesday’s ceremony will be in the Capitol’s west foyer.