Vintage 1960's squash blossom necklace. Set in solid sterling silver and genuine Morenci turquoise. Navajo handcrafted. Handmade beads. Measuring approximately 30" in length, the Naja is 3-1/2" x 3". Matching earrings measure 1-1/2" x 3/8". Wonderful example of a handmade piece of Native American history. It comes with a certificate of authenticity, along with all documentation of materials. Artist : Lloyd Oliver- Navajo artist and Navajo Code Talker: Oliver, who was born in Shiprock, N.M. on April 23rd 1923 is best known for his service in the Marines as one only a few Navajo code talkers, he was also an acclaimed silver smith. He joined the Marines at age 19 (1942) He served in the Island’s of Guadalcanal, New Britain, Saipan and Peleliu. He was a corporal when was discharged in 1945. He was recognized in 2001 by then President George W. Bush. His Jewelry is known for its heavy gauge silver and larger stones. His hallmark is " LO" in simple Helvetica font. During the 1970’s -1990’s, he lived in the Phoenix area and sold his pieces to stores in the Scottsdale area. Most of his pieces are in private collections and are a true reflection of traditional Navajo style artistry. He passed away on Mar.18th 2011. Vintage 1960's squash blossom necklace - Navajo handcrafted -Morenci turquoise Often defined for its age and or time period, the 1940s through 70s (or so) would often be referred to as "vintage" while anything newer would be modern to contemporary. Our collection of VINTAGE JEWELRY has been hidden away for many years with a private collector. Released under the promise anonymity, this collector is letting Spirit of Santa Fe offer it for sale. We guarantee its 100% authenticity along with all-natural stones, sterling silver, handcrafted stamp work, and even a few hand wrought sterling silver pieces. More importantly every piece is one of a kind and is a window into a time period when Indian Jewelry was known for its rare, beautiful stones and sometimes RAW craftsmanship by today’s standards. Our 3-generations of trading with the Native Americans have given us this opportunity which we are honored to offer to our valued new and existing customers. SQUASH BLOSSOM NECKLACE While squash blossom imagery can be found in petroglyphs (rock art) that pre-date European contact in the Southwest, Dubin said the squash blossom necklace was created in the late 1870s or early 1880s after the native people of the area made contact with Spanish Mexicans. The Navajo, it is believed, were the first tribe to adopt the design, but by the early 1900s, the art form had spread to neighboring tribes, including the Zuni and the Pueblo. While the entire necklace has taken its name from one type of bead, the classic squash blossom necklace actually has three distinct parts: the plain round beads; the round beads Naja. Naja is also representative of the womb, and when a squash blossom necklace features a single turquoise nugget suspended from the Naja, it is often interpreted to be symbolic of a child in the womb. Naja Symbol Meaning The naja is a crescent-shaped piece that is often worn alone as a pendant or as the center piece of a squash blossom necklace in Southwestern Indian jewelry.... The word "naja" is the Navajo word for "crescent". "Naja" is the name the Navajo gave to a symbol believed to have originated in the Middle East in ancient times. Like some many symbols, it was created as a talisman for protection, with the Moors affixing it to their horses' bridles to ward off the evil eye. Morenic Turquoise is mined in southeastern Arizona, in Greenlee County. It is light blue to high blue in color. Morenci has an unusual matrix of irregular black pyrite, or fool’s gold; when polished, the pyrite often looks like silver. It also is sometimes webbed in a darker shade of blue, called water webbed. Morenci turquoise is well known because it was one of the first American turquoises to come on the modern market, and is often difficult to obtain because the mine is now depleted, making it an exceedingly collectible turquoise. Material coming out in the 1960’s seems to be harder, tending more to the blue-greens, usually with the pyrite. In the 1970’s, the material was a much brighter blue, often with quartz along with the pyrite. Sterling silver Is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% by weight of silver and 7.5% by weight of other metals, usually copper. The sterling silver standard has a minimum millesimal fineness of 925. SILVER, for example 99.9% pure silver, is relatively soft, so silver is usually alloyed with copper to increase its hardness and strength. Sterling silver is prone to tarnishing, and elements other than copper can be used in alloys to reduce tarnishing, as well as casting porosity and fire scale. Such elements include germanium, zinc, platinum, silicon, and boron. Recent examples of alloys using these metals include argentium, sterlium, sterilite and silvadium.