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James Avery, Texas Hill Country Jewelry Icon, Passes Away at Age 96

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In a notification from his Kerrville-based business, it was announced that James Avery, owner of James Avery Artisan Jewelry, has passed away at the age of 96. A veteran of World War II, Avery built his business from the ground up, starting out small in his in-laws’ garage, growing it into a nationally-recognized chain.

The company acknowledged Avery’s passing in their social media posts stating: “It is with heartfelt sorrow that we announce the passing of our founder, James Avery. We are forever grateful to Mr. Avery for giving us the opportunity to be a part of his dream. He was a dynamic, creative and generous man who touched the lives of many people during his lifetime through his work, his art and his giving spirit. His contributions will always be remembered as the company continues to build upon his artistic legacy. If you would like to share a memory, story or condolence with the family, please visit www.JamesAvery.com or email [email protected] In lieu of sending flowers or other gifts, and in recognition of Mr. Avery’s generous and giving spirit, we welcome you to give to the charity of your choice.”

James Avery, Texas Hill Country Jewelry Icon, Passes Away at Age 96

Photo: Facebook/James Avery Artisan Jewelry

Avery began designing his mostly Christian-themed jewelry creations along with his wife in 1954. His private company had humble beginnings in the Texas Hill Country, designing, developing, and selling their items either directly or through partnerships with other companies for commissioned designs. When he established his business, he had just $250 in start-up funds, yet he patiently grew his business from there, not hiring an additional employee until year three. Today, the company operates 80 stores throughout Texas, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Georgia, and Louisiana, and sells its designs in 28 states via over 200 Dillard’s department stores. In 2007, Avery retired from the business, leaving control of James Avery Artisan Jewelry to two of his sons.