Vintage Handcrafted Turquoise Nugget & Sterling Beaded Southwestern Necklace
Vintage handcrafted turquoise beaded southwestern necklace with sterling silver heart shaped toggle clasp. Necklace is marked ‘.925’ on the sterling clasp. Metal clasp on necklace has been tested for being 925 parts per 1000.
Measurements: 16 inches long
Weight: 12 grams
Condition: Turquoise necklace is in very good vintage condition with natural color variation and matrix lines of turquoise stones.
The necklace is signed ‘.925’ on the heart shaped toggle clasp
History: Turquoise stones have been worn as jewelry for thousands of years by a variety of cultures. Turquoise is native to dry arid lands around the world, with the primary mine locations in Iran, Mexico, Egypt, United States, China, and Chile. The oldest turquoise mine is believed to be located in the Sinai Peninsula, called the 'Maghara Wadi' mines. One of the world's oldest known examples of turquoise jewelry was found in the ancient tomb of Egyptian Queen Zar. It was a turquoise & gold bracelet discovered in 1990 by an archaeologist. Europe was introduced to turquoise through Turkey and was mined in Khorasan of Persia. The name 'turquoise' was first used during the 17th century and was derived from the french name 'turquois', which means 'Turkish'.
The Caral culture of Peru is one of the earliest cultures in South America to use turquoise. In Mesoamerica (now Mexico), the Aztec and Mayan cultures used turquoise as adornments, and traded turquoise jewelry to others. In North America, turquoise was being mined and used by Native Americans in the 200 B.C era. Popular ancient turquoise mines in the Southwestern region were in the Cerrillos and Burro Mountains (located in what is now known as New Mexico.) Southwestern turquoise usually comes from historic mines such as the Kingman turquoise mine and Morenci turquoise mine in Arizona. Different Native American cultures mined and created turquoise jewelry, which includes the Anasazi People, pueblos of Tewa, Zuni, Santo Domingo, and Acoma tribes. There are a variety of different turquoise stones native to the Southwest region of America. Turquoise mines produce different types of color variation and matrixes, which includes Royston Turquoise, Carico Lake Turquoise, Lone Mountain Turquoise, Number 8 Turquoise, and Sleeping Beauty Turquoise.