Measurements: ~ 3" long
Kingman stone ~ 1-3/8" long
Artist:(stamped "NJ") / Nila Cook Johnson, Navajo/ Native American
Lapidary and silversmithing is an important way of life for the Navajo people. Starting in the 19th century, a man named Atsidi Sani (1830 –1918) is credited with being the first among his people to learn the fine artistry of jewelry making. Atsidi was taught by a Mexican man named Nakai Tsosi, who also taught the craft to other Navajo members. Unlike Zuni jewelry makers, Navajo artists are a bit more traditional in their style, concentrating on using high quality stones, minimally sculpted and then set into intricate high quality fine sterling silver, as opposed to the inlay work, normally associated with Zuni artists. For more information about the Navajo people, please click here.
Turquoise is a hydrous phosphate of aluminum and copper, found mainly in massive form and in colors ranging from blue to green, depending upon the content of copper it is associated with. Turquoise was originally imported from Turkey, where it derives its name. Turquoise, the "fallen sky stone", has for over 7000 years been valued by cultures for its beauty. It is reputed to have spiritual and life-giving qualities, and it is highly prized by Native Americans. As legend goes, a long time ago someone noticed a clear blue line running through gray rock, and saw the imagery of sky and water in the stone. From that time on, turquoise has been cherished. Turquoise..... "stone of sky, stone of water, stone of blessings, good fortune, protection, good health and long life".