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Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

Curse of the Hope Diamond
The Misfortunes of Evalyn Walsh McLean

Over time, Evalyn Walsh McLean and the Hope Diamond became nearly inseparable. Evalyn did not believe that the stone would bring her bad luck. Unfortunately, tragedy did strike Evalyn multiple times throughout her life. In 1919, her eldest son Vinson was hit by a car and killed in front of their estate at the age of nine. Her husband Ned drank heavily, took on a mistress, and was eventually declared insane. In 1946, Evalyn’s only daughter, Evalyn McLean Reynolds, died of a drug overdose at age twenty-five. Evalyn never fully recovered from this loss, and died shortly thereafter of pneumonia (Patch 1999).

Creator Harris & Ewing
Photo ID LC-DIG-hec-00952
Source Library of Congress

Evalyn Walsh and Ned McLean with dog, 1912

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