Lester Abeyta Turquoise Bead Necklace

An absolutely exquisite single strand necklace with Kingman turquoise round "Gumball" beads and sterling silver clasp.

Simple designs of necklaces made from bone, shell and stone have been found in early archaeological excavations in North America. The early Native Americans mined turquoise and made turquoise beads and turquoise beaded necklaces. Turquoise bead jewelry has been a long tradition in our Native American cultural.

The Santo Domingo Indians have an ancient tradition of jewelry making that can be seen in their turquoise necklaces. The turquoise necklace is the prevailing form of jewelry for the Santo Domingo.

The Santo Domingo Pueblo Indians are known world wide for their talents as lapidary artists. Bead making is a timeless art form that has changed little over the years. Before the arrival of the Spaniards, the Santo Domingo people actively mined turquoise from what is now the Cerrillos Mine and made turquoise necklaces which were used for trading between tribes. Each bead is entirely cut, shaped, drilled and polished by hand. Even today, many of the village's people make all or part of their livelihood by making jewelry, pottery and beaded art work.

A respected artist, whose work appears in many galleries and museums across the United States, Lester lives in the Santa Domingo Pueblo located in New Mexico.  He shows annually at the Santa Fe Indian Market.