Thirty years ago, when he was just out of the Marine Corps, Gene Jackson nearly died flying face-first off a Harley into the side of a pickup truck in Oklahoma City. With an arm cast, a mouth wired shut, and a series of steel plates, he was shooting pool in a motorcycle club’s bar when an old biker gave him a crystal. Whatever works, Jackson thought. The next day he passed that crystal along to another biker in immense pain, who felt quick relief. “It freaked her out; it freaked me out. It started my process. I started giving away every crystal I could get my hands on. I’m a broke biker, so I became a dealer to support my own habit,” he laughs.
After buying and selling rocks in Tucson for seven years (where he still does his sourcing today), Jackson moved to Cincinnati and built The Crystal Guy out of his Blue Ash home by word of mouth—and by a series of home expansions to hold his ever-growing inventory—in the 20 years since. Open by appointment, Jackson’s entire lower level is packed with every imaginable stone, a small, knowledgeable staff, and a space where he runs workshops. When you arrive? There’s no shop sign. But there are two giant rose quartz stones standing sentry at the front door to help you find your way.