Posted by John Hartman on Apr 29th 2016
Many years ago Estell and I, (John and Estell Hartman,) unknowingly met one of the most important Turquoise Miners in the history of American Turquoise Mining, Cutler Edgar. In 1973, we rolled into Battle Mountain, Nevada and started asking who to talk to about buying Turquoise, we were led to Cutler Edgar who lived in Battle Mountain. We went to his house and he was in the back yard cobbing Turquoise - cobbing Turquoise is when you clean the host rock off of the Turquoise with a miners pick. We sat with him for about 3 hours that day and he invited us to come back tomorrow, we did and we helped him cob Stormy Mountain Turquoise all day. At the end of the day, Cutler asked if we wanted to go up to the mine tomorrow, of course we did - so off we went the next day and we brought back about 30 lbs that afternoon - we cobbed it until dark and he gave it to us. On that trip, we mined Stormy Mountain Turquoise with Cutler for about 5 days and ended up leaving with about 350 lbs of awesome rough material.
One of the conversations was about his many years mining Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise and how wonderful that experiance was because most of the material had spiderweb matrix. Cutler was obsessed with Spiderweb Turquoise and the Number 8 Turquoise Mine was probibly the finest deposit of Spiderweb Turquoise that has ever been found in the United States. We ended up getting a bunch of Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise when we went to Dowell Wards, one of Cutlers best friends as well as his backer. We were amazed to see a wearhouse loaded with 55 gallon barrels of Number 8 Turquoise - it was an awesome experiance. We still have some of that Turquoise Today! Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise is historical as well as beautiful!
Although Dowell Ward had thousand of lbs of Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise, we dumped about a barrel of Turquoise out and most of it was very soft, chalky material, it was a powder blue and some of it was hard - say maybe 5% so, Estell and I were not interested in that. We just went through and found about 100 lbs of hard spiderwebbed Number 8 Turquoise and left the rest. When we got it back to Albuquerque, we cut a bunch of the Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise into cabochons and started making Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise Jewelry - it was beautiful!
Durango Silver Company has made a lot of Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise Jewelry in the past and will continue to produce Jewelry with Number 8 Spiderweb Turquoise in the future. These days, we do not have great excesses of this material, however, we are alway on the look out so we do not tend you use up our remaining stock. Number 8 Turquoise and especially if it has spiderwebbing is highly collectible and well worth your time seeking if you like high grade American Turquoise.
All prices are in USD