Turquoise has a huge history and has been popular since the dawn of modern civilization. It is a fact that Turquoise is one of the first gemstones known to man. Four Turquoise Bracelets were found on the mummified arm of Queen Zar which date back to the second ruler of the Egypts First Dynasty (5,500 B.C.). It is recorded by archeologists that the Egyptians were mining Turquoise on the Sinai Peninsula in 3000 B.C. at Serabit al-Khadim.
Aristotle and Pliny both refer to turquoise. Marco Polo even wrote about it.
The jewel of the Orient – Turquoise is believed to have been discovered in northeastern Persia around 4000 B.C. Archeologists uncovered Persian Turquoise in graves in Turkistan and throughout the Caucasus dating back to the first century B.C. so it is believed that it found its way out of Persia about 500 B.C. Neyshabur, Iran (Persia) turquoise mines are believed to be among the world's oldest known turquoise mines, which supplied the stone to Europe, Western Asia and America. The city was once a significant spot on the ancient Silk Road, linking the Iranian plateau and Central Asia. Due to the high copper content in the earth there, the Turquoise has brilliant colors of blue which were very attractive to peoples throughout the world. Today, it is very hard to find and as a result, very expensive.
In America the earliest turquoise known is associated with the South American Cupisnique culture after 900 B.C., in the Middle Pre-Classic Valley of Mexico, 700 to 650 B.C. The oldest well-documented record of turquoise in the United States is from the Snaketown ruin in southeastern Arizona, two adornments were found dating prior to 300 A.D. In northwestern New Mexico at Chaco Canyon, turquoise was used by 750 A.D. or earlier. Over 100,000 pieces of Turquoise have been found in excavations at Chaco dating from around 900 to 1150 A.D. At Pueblo Bonito, more than 65,000 pieces of turquoise have been found. It is very interesting that there are no known deposits of Turquoise near Chaco Canyon – so, early Native Americans were nomadic and Turquoise was at trade item early on. Cerrillos Mt. Chalchihuitl, which is near Cerrillos New Mexico, is the largest known prehistoric turquoise mine in North America. Turquoise and artifacts such as stone axes, mauls, picks, and lapidary stones found at the site confirm the Native Americans were mining Turquoise at this location since 1000 A.D. Turquoise from New Mexico reached Mexico City, the Mayan Cities, from the West Indies and Yucatan on the south to Ontario to the North – from California to the west and to the east coast.
Link: New Mexico History - Turquoise
Learn about the history of Turquoise in New Mexico, USA. Learn about the ancient history of the Cerrillos Turquoise Mine near Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Link: Cerrillos Hills Turquoise History
All about Cerrillos Hills and the famous Turquoise found in them. The Cerrillos Turquoise mines are world famous for being some of the first Turquoise mines to be mined by the Ancient peoples of America. The have a very colorful history that is as varied as the wonderful Turquoise that comes from them.
Link: Turquoise Facts
This is the number one resource for Turquoise Facts, History and Lore on the internet. This website has tons of great pictures, facts, history and a great mines list.
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