Aaland Jewelers – In Memory of Tom Moriarty

My name is Steve Moriarty. The following is a thank you to my brother Tom Moriarty and his wife Virginia Moriarty of Aaland Diamond Jewelers who led me to the formation of Moriarty's Gem Art on the square in Crown Point.

Where did the name Aaland Come From?

Aaland was the name my father used when he formed the first camper company in the midwest which directly led to the camper trailer boom in Elkhart.  The name Aaland was a derivative of the Island Aland, a Swedish speaking Island off the Finland coast.  Our mother was Swedish.  My father threw in an extra A to be top billing in the Telephone book.

When Did Tom Get Aaland?

Tom picked up the name for his new Gem and Diamond company in the early 1970's.  While at college at Ball State University Tom would send me gems to sell to the Jewelry Arts Department students.   I was fascinated by rocks from an early age so after a year at Simmons bedding working as a chemist I was easily talked into joining Tom and Virginia at Aaland Gem. Tom and I developed an excellent wholesale business selling colored gem jewelry to retail Jewelers throughout the Midwest.  Tom was the buyer and I did the selling on the road.  In 1981 we were instrumental in the formation of the A.G.T.A, The American Gem Trade Association, currently the largest organization dedicated to the promotion of colored gems.

Parting Ways

Once we hit our first million dollar year, Tom and I began parting ways.   He started a retail trade and I went deeper into my passions of searching the world for fine gem material and began my true love, cutting gems and creating jewelry. I talked to my wife, Nancy, one night and the next day Nancy and I formed Moriarty Gem Corporation.  I continued to sell wholesale up until 1994, at which time I had had enough of traveling to visit retail jewelers, so Nancy and I also went into retail, forming Moriarty's Gem Art on the square in Crown Point, Indiana. Over the next 20 years we also added websites that display our stones such as www.moregems.com.

I will miss Tom and hope Tom's legacy of Aaland Diamond Jewelry will live on under new leadership.

- Steve Moriarty