These vintage earrings stand out for the stunning Bisbee turquoise from Arizona. Each earring consists of an oval shaped stone at the post, as well as a rectangular dangling section. Each of the stones sits in a serrated bezel surrounded by an elegant and impressive silverwork setting, with applied floral designs, feathers or leaves (I tend to think they're leaves given the flowers) and wire scrolls. The stones are stunning, all handcut, and presenting a deep almost teal blue color mixed with the dark gray and chocolate matrix that is the hallmark of this rare turquoise. The Bisbee Mine was originally founded in the mid 1870's but wasn't mined for turquoise until the 1960s. It was a phenomenal copper mine, given the name "The Copper Queen," and it produced gold, silver, lead, and zinc. Other minerals, such as malachite, azurite, and turquoise were all by-products of the main attraction (copper). When turquoise was discovered there in the late 1950s, at the Lavender Pit region of the mine, it was hauled off to a waste area. From a website about how the turquoise finally made it into jewelry: "Individual miners recognized the beauty of the Bisbee Turquoise and would sneak small amounts of the Turquoise out in their lunch boxes and/or whatever other means they could muster. It was not long after Bisbee Turquoise was discovered in the Mine that it was introduced to the Southwestern Jewelry Industry. By the early 1960's, Bisbee Turquoise had become the finest Turquoise the market had ever seen and demand for it went through the roof. Again, the mining of Turquoise at the Bisbee Mine was restricted, and only small amounts were able to be taken out and sold to the Jewelry industry." What I love about the stones in these earrings is that they all display the smoky webbing that is immediately recognizable as Bisbee. The earrings were made in the 1990s by master silversmith Peterson Johnson, "a self-taught Navajo artist who has won numerous awards throughout the Southwest and whose work is sought by collectors around the world. He was born in 1956 and began creating silverwork in 1976. He is very well known for his traditional Navajo jewelry, which shows meticulous workmanship and has a distinctive Peterson flair. Peterson is known among fellow artists as 'the machine' because he is SO meticulous in every detail of his work." One of the earrings carries the artist's hallmark as well as a STERLING stamp on the back.
The earrings measures about 7/8" wide across the widest point by 2-1/8" long and dangle slightly shorter. Weighs 13g each or 26g total. Some small scratches on the back but otherwise in excellent condition.
Rare and collectible turquoise with exquisite silverwork.
Please convo with questions, or call (505) 369-6865. Will return your call as soon as possible.
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Native Belts and Bolos: http://bit.ly/2oz2XKp
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1-3 business days
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