This is a truly wonderful Fred (Frederick) Davis Sterling Silver Mexican Link Necklace with the very earliest mark dating to the C1930s. It is signed Made in Mexico/Silver/FD. This is his earliest FD mark. Each of the twenty one 3/4" long links is hollow thus making the necklace light and easy to wear. At first, it appeared that the necklace was fashioned from two bracelets, but each of the two sections is too long for a bracelet. The join comes in the very middle of the necklace and was constructed that way. The necklace has not been cleaned or polished and has the wonderful original patina (and a light touch of verdigris) that is so highly desirable. The necklace measures 16" long and 3/4" wide, and the weight is 82.4 grams. There are no dents, damage or repairs. It is exquisite and does have pre-Columbian influence and feel in the artistic design, an area that was of high interest to Fred Davis. But at the same time, the design is classic and even Modernist in its simplicity.
The following information about Frederick Davis was obtained from Wikipedia: Frederick W. Davis (April 17, 1877 - March 7, 1961) operated an antiquities and folk art shop in Mexico City. Davis was an early collector and dealer in pre-Columbian and Mexican folk art and his shop was a place where Mexican Modern artists who were interested in pre-Columbian and folk art, often met. Davis was born and raised in Illinois. He came to Mexico about 1910 and worked for the Sonora News Company selling newspapers, guidebooks, and souvenirs on the Southern Pacific Railway line south from Nogales, Arizona. Davis, who was interested in folk art and pre-Columbian art of Mexico became the manager of the Sonora Company's arts and crafts showroom in Mexico City. During the Mexican Revolution (1910-1920), many Mexican antiques came on the market. After 1920, as stability returned and Americans became interested in Mexico, Davis's shop attracted collectors and other visitors. Artists of the emerging "Mexican school" were interested in both historical and contemporary folk art, so they also gravitated to Davis's shop. Davis was among the first to collect, display and sell their work. He exhibited work by Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, and Rufino Tamayo; others who came to the shop included Miguel Covarrubias and Jean Charlot. Davis also displayed work by Americans including George Biddle, Caroline Durieux, and William Spratling. In 1927, Davis hired Rene d'Harnoncourt as his assistant. D'Harnoncourt worked with Davis until 1933, helping in the purchase and sale of art objects and organizing displays and exhibits in the showroom.
Davis was also a noted silversmith and produced numerous pieces of Mexican jewelry. In 1933, Davis left the Sonora News Company and became head of the department of antiques and fine crafts in Frank Sanborn's Mexico City store. He continued supporting Mexican artists and craftsmen by displaying and selling their work.
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