A petite vintage beauty, in size six and one half (6 1/2) in US sizing, according to my ring sizer, is this very feminine and precious sterling silver and turquoise ring. This was not a mass-produced-on-assembly-line fabrication for the tourist trade; it is a handmade work of art in which each natural turquoise stone is hand cut and polished, and hand set in hand cut sterling silver bezels. The setting with turquoise stone is approximately two thirds of an inch (2/3") long and approximately one third of an inch wide. making a very dainty and comfortable ring. The ring itself is a teeny bit off circular, as it is vintage and has been previously worn. This vintage ring was purchased at the Cameron Trading Post on the Navajo Reservation, as vintage pawn and dates from the 1960s to 1970s. Due to the date it is from , more than likely the turquoise has been stabilized so it will not change or lose color, so it can be worn without absorbing oils from the skin. It has a thin band, not visibly worn down, and is marked with 925 to denote sterling silver.
Please Note: The Indian Arts and Crafts Act of 1990 is Federal Law. If the piece is unsigned - or signed such that a particular artist cannot be identified, so the tribe that the artist or artisan belongs to cannot be CORRESPONDINGLY identified, then the Law requires that -even though one may know the style and elements and type, and that the ways and means in which it is made definitely identifies the article as of a particular tribe- the piece cannot be identified as being a particular tribal piece, say of the Hopi or Zuni or Navajo tribe- but one can say it is similar to or same as or in the style of a tribe- So for my jewelry that was purchased much pre-1990, either from artisans on the Reservations, or from galleries or trading posts on Reservations- I can give that purchase location information.Further, the law applies whether the piece was made in 1890, 1990 or 2009. If it is unmarked, or the artist mark does not indicate a particular tribal affiliation, I can say it looks like a particular tribe and in what ways I feel this is so- but I cannot say it IS a particular tribe. That breaks the Federal Law and is a highly sensitive issue with Native American peoples. I am neither a lawyer nor a Federal Agent, but I try to maintain the integrity of my shop by complying with all known laws.
WHAT IS DEAD PAWN?
For the Southwestern Native American, of such tribes as Hopi, Zuni, Navajo, and Pueblo, pawn refers to the practice of converting art and other intrinsically valuable possessions into income for life's necessities. Pawn can be items from antiquity, such as heirloom pieces of handmade jewelry or crafts that are passed from a family to become pawn and hence into the public marketplace. Because most pawned merchandise is of necessary value in the seller's life, the percentage of pawn that goes unredeemed is quite small, reportedly about five percent.
Merchandise that remains unredeemed in a pawn shop after loan expiration is known as "dead pawn," and items of dead pawn are among the most highly valued Native American artifacts to be found on the open market.
Some pieces of dead pawn are antique or old, while other pieces have been pawned by the ORIGINAL ARTIST or by others, in an unused state. It is difficult to tell the age of a piece of jewelry, but some indicators are "wear and tear," evidence of continued previous polishing, the style of the setting, or style of the piece itself, the type of stone or material used in the settings.
Any other accessory items used for display are not included in this offering (including my hand!), unless otherwise specified.
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