Turquoise In Arizona

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Turquoise Intro: The reason I chose turquoise for my final paper has to do with the history and some family ties I have with the mineral. And I also thought I would be different and choose a mineral not many people know about. History: Turquoise in Nevada has been mined before the first European settlers. Anasazi Indians were some of the first to mine turquoise and use it for beautiful jewelry. However, unlike some of the tribes in Arizona that also cherish turquoise, silver work and the art of making Native American style silver jewelry never became fully established in Nevada. As a result, even though Nevada still produces considerable quantities of turquoise, the traditional use of this gem in the crafts of the Paiute and Shoeshone…show more content…
Many companies in Arizona will contract people or companies to come and mine out the turquoise as a byproduct. Mostly hand methods are used to extract the turquoise. California turquoise can be traced back as far as pre-Colombian Native Americans. They have found many tools that were used to extract the turquoise. Over the years many of the state’s deposits have produced mass numbers of turquoise. In the better grade materials, the color varies from a pale to a dark blue, poorer grade materials are greenish-blue and green in color. Some of the material has yellow-brown limonite spider webbing. A lot of this turquoise when extracted usually takes lots of polishing to bring out the great blue colors. New Mexico was at one point the leading producer of turquoise in the United States until Arizona and Nevada took the lead. Now most turquoise mining has stopped do to the quantity and question of economics. Nevada has been the major producer of Turquoise since 1930. There are about 75 to 100 different mines that have produced high amounts of turquoise ranging in the thousands to millions of dollars. Associated with some of the turquoise deposits are two other gem materials that can resemble certain colors and shades of turquoise. The first is variscite, and the other is faustite. Both have been mistaken for and marketed as turquoise.

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