Native American Jewelry


Navajo Old Pawn silver and turquoise ring 

7 irregular carved stones with globular beads between stones.  Beautiful pale blue turquoise with whitish matrix.  

band diameter approx 5/8" split for resizing, width across top 1 1/2"

Scribed in thin lines on inside 249 HIS

excellent condition with typical oxidation from age.

  We do not clean our vintage silver pieces, in order not to alter the patina.   We leave the decision to clean or polish up to the buyer. 

Circa 1950

Purchased in Gallup, New Mexico in 1955. Seller noted as "Wallace"


PRICE - 125.00

 C.G. Wallace was a trader at Zuni Pueblo in the early to mid-1900's. He encouraged artists to experiment, resulting in a melding of traditional styles and motifs with contemporary techniques. Over the years, Wallace established a private collection of 2,500 pieces of exquisite jewelry, 525 of which he donated to the Heard Museum in Phoenix Arizona in 1975.  The C.G. Wallace Collection  is considered the largest, most well-documented collection of Native American jewelry from the early to mid-1900's.

"Old Pawn" refers to Southwestern Indian jewelry and textiles pawned by Indian families, often to raise money before harvest or shearing time.  Until recent times, the only manufactured goods, available in  remote areas of the Southwest were at trading posts, originally set up to administer treaty trade by the Department of Indian Affairs. These "Posts" later became privately owned businesses trading in lumber, wool, and farm products . Families needing cash or credit would trade valuables for the goods they needed. These items could be redeemed or could be left and eventually sold by the trader for whatever profit he could make.  "Old Pawn" jewelry often exhibits long passed craftsmanship, unusual stones and exceptional character. Museums throughout the US and the world are filled with examples of fine, old craftsmanship which most likely came out of a pawnbroker's vault.  Museum-quality old pawn  is now rare, and highly desired by collectors.  

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