LINCOLN, Maine — A jewelry business with connections in Brazil and along the West Coast will replace a downtown stalwart when The Lincoln Jeweler opens on Friday, its owner said.
Moving into the same storefront at 46 Main St. that was occupied by J.K. Vose Fine Jewelers — which closed last year after 55 years in business — the new store is a first attempt by co-owner Troy Hatch to go from the jewelry and precious stones wholesale business into retail.
“I have always wanted to have an outlet store in Maine, and this is a somewhat famous one,” Hatch said of the storefront. “[James] Vose was a very respected gemologist and also respected for his work with tourmaline.”
A semiprecious stone and Maine’s state mineral, tourmaline ranges in color from black or white to vibrant shades of red, green and blue and is largely found in Oxford, Androscoggin, Sagadahoc and Cumberland counties, according to maine.gov.
Hatch’s businesses include mining interests in Brazil that supply more than 400 jewelers nationwide, including the West Coast chain of Ben Bridge Jeweler stores, with tourmaline and other precious and semiprecious stones, he said.
The Lincoln Planning Board issued a new business permit to Hatch and his business partner, Daniel Lane, who owns The Village Jeweler of Gardiner, last week, Economic Development Director Ruth Birtz said. Workers were in the store Monday preparing a host of items for sale.
The Lincoln Jeweler will have three or four full-time employees, plus part-time holiday hires, and will feature a variety of semiprecious and precious stones, an array of rings, necklaces and other jewelry, as well as timepiece repair, Hatch said. The store also will buy gold, silver, offer jewelry repair and feature a full-time gemologist. Its holiday hours will run from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., with regular hours from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. beginning in January.
The Lincoln Lakes region’s lack of a full-service jewelry store made moving to Lincoln seem a good bet, Hatch said.
“J.K. Vose was a solid performer, economically,” Hatch said. “It would be different if it shut down because of the economy, but it wasn’t that way here, and this area is underserviced for jewelry.”