Antique African trade beads made in the early 1900's in Europe were used for bartering with African people. African trade beads came about as a result of the need for traders along the route between Europe and Africa for a currency to trade with the Africans.
Over the years I have purchased many of these fascinating beads. Investigating the history of African trade beads is a tricky task. The antique Millefiori and Chevron beads are easily identifiable and many beads feature tell-tale signs of antiquity, such as pitting and small fractures. There are some beads, which to the trained eye, can be dated based on certain aesthetics; the way they are cut, their shape, and even designs can be indicative of the century, or era they were made.
Although many countries made their own beads to trade, those made in Italy are some of the most beautiful. The large focal Venetian Millefiori Bead is a classic example of the ones made in Italy.
Several other elements including large Turquoise ovals, round and oval Chrysocolla Jasper, red agate, red Jasper, bone and horn disks and vintage Sand Cast beads complete this one of a kind Ethnic style necklace. The necklace length is 19 inches.
Antique African Trade Bead Necklace