Estate Jewelry; Vintage: Artisan signed sterling silver bead necklace, Native American, Navajo
Presented here is a 27-inch long strand of exquisite sterling silver elliptical beads, hand made by the famous Navajo artist Elsie Yazzie (Elsie Mustache Yazzie, Navajo, of the Folding Arms Clan, married to Chee Yazzie, mother of Lee and Raymond C. Yazzie and their 10 siblings. Elsie was born into the Mustache/Benally families in 1921, Married into the Yazzie family in 1940, and died in 1991. According to the United States' senses of 1940, she was an active jeweler at the time selling her items through the Tanner Trading post in Gallup New Mexico. Elsie was active as a registered Navajo jeweler from 1940 to 1990 and is featured in the 2014 Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian book: "Glittering World: Navajo Jewelry of the Yazzie Family. Elsie's beads and when she made them are discussed at length in the book.
The necklace presented here is an example of the fine workmanship and artistic design Elsie Yazzie displayed in the jewelry she made. Each "seamless" elliptical bead in this necklace measures 1 inch in length and 1/2 inch in width at its widest point. The beads are semi-solid with a whole running their length. They are strung on silver foxtail in the traditional Navajo way, giving them strength and a fine drape. The 27-inch long necklace weighs 3 oz. The beads at each end of the necklace have the precious metal hallmark "sterling" and the EY letters used as the makers hallmark by Elsie (Mustache) Yazzie from the late 1960s to her death in 1991.
The necklace dates from the 1960s. It is in very good condition and the beads are so well made that the necklace is comfortable to wear.
The necklace is a beautiful piece of Vintage Native American, Navajo jewelry. It is a collector's piece and will be sent to you in a black leatherette jeweler envelope for keeping.
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Vintage sterling silver Navajo bead necklace