From its modest beginnings in 1946 in Detroit, Michigan, Mrs. Margaret Adderley Kelly, her husband, the late William R. Kelly and their son, Mr. Terence E. Adderley, shaped Kelly Services, Inc. into a Fortune 500 company that now employs over 700,000 people worldwide. The iconic 'Kelly Girl' became a household name by 1957, synonymous with high-quality temporary employees. The Kellys' staffing empire now includes over 2,700 offices in 27 countries, a fitting tribute to their pioneering spirit and vision.
Born Margaret Julia Kenedy in Detroit, she began a decade long career in modeling in the mid-1930s. Always well-dressed, she was a beautiful woman dedicated to her son, five granddaughters, and two grandsons, including Terence E. Adderley, Jr. who perished in the World Trade Center tragedy. Mrs. Kelly was widely known as a kind and gracious person who enjoyed many varied interests including world travel, the performing arts, collecting fine porcelain, educational pursuits and the culinary arts.
Philanthropy was a cornerstone of her life and many organizations benefited from her immense generosity. One measure of her extraordinary altruism was her gift of one million dollars to the Broward Center for the Performing Arts in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. As a member of the Board of Directors of Florida Grand Opera, she generously sponsored several opera galas in addition to operatic productions, including An Evening to Remember and The Millenium Ball, as well as underwriting the performances of Turandot, Carmen and Les comtes d'Hoffman. Her bequest of two million dollars to the School of Medicine at the University of Michigan was made in honor of her grandson, Russell G. Adderley, who died of cancer at the age of 12. The Russell G. Adderley Professorship in Pediatric Oncology will be held by an outstanding scientist dedicated to advancing the knowledge of childhood cancers. Other benefiting organizations include the Memorial Sloane-Kettering Cancer Center, MD Anderson Cancer Center and a one million dollar leadership gift to Catholic Charities. An enthusiastic supporter of the performing arts and other worthy causes, Mrs. Kelly's generosity will benefit generations to come.
Jewels and fine gemstones were one of Mrs. Kelly's greatest passions and over the years, she collected with the discerning eye of a great connoisseur. The breadth of the collection is superb and the diamonds, diamond jewelry and the gemstones are outstanding, a testament to her love for the exceptional, rare and beautiful.
Creations by the prominent London jeweler, David Morris, comprise an astonishing array of diamond jewelry, including a cluster necklace, bracelet, brooch and ear clips (lots 180, 181, 182 and 183). Two large, well-matched pear-shaped diamonds, weighing 13.47 and 13.34 carats, are featured in a pair of elegant diamond ear clips by David Morris (lot 177).
A passionate admirer of rare colored diamonds, Mrs. Kelly's collection includes two particularly interesting hues. Her striking marquise-cut fancy blue diamond ring, weighing 6.21 carats, is set within a mount enhanced by two purplish-pink diamonds (lot 179). The color blue occurs in a diamond when minute amounts of boron atoms are incorporated within the crystal lattice structure of the diamond during its crystallization at least 100 million years ago. Historically, these stones came from the Kollur mines near Golconda in India. Today, almost all blue diamonds are products of the Premier Mine near Pretoria in South Africa. Another stunning colored diamond is the modified rectangular-cut fancy intense orangy-pink stone, weighing 6.82 carats, which is featured in a ring with heart-shaped yellow diamonds (lot 178). This unusual color is derived from an anomaly in the crystal lattice of the diamond's growth structure.
Not limited to diamonds, her colored gemstones are just as unique and exceptional. One extraordinary stone is the stunning pink-orange Padparadscha sapphire, weighing 20.84 carats, a rarity in today's market (lot 173). This unusual stone is set within a ring designed especially for Mrs. Kelly by the celebrated jeweler, Henry Dunay. Mrs. Kelly's appreciation of his designs is evidenced by her remarkable collection which is known to be the largest in the world. The word, 'padparadscha' is derived from the Sinhalese 'padmaraga', meaning the color of a lotus blossom in bloom. It is most unusual to find a gem of this size, intensity, saturation and hue and this ring will no doubt be very strongly coveted by collectors worldwide.