White Buffalo Turquoise Jewelry
Formation and Description
White Buffalo, although technically not turquoise, is often referred to as turquoise due to its discovery in a turquoise mine. The reason behind its illustrious white color is due to its formation by the same mineralization process, "regular" in which turquoise undergoes. However, the difference between this and other turquoise is that it lacks the presence of heavy metals like copper, iron, or zinc, which add the common turquoise colors in the blue-green-yellow spectrum. This stone, sometimes called Sacred White Buffalo, is very rare and coveted for its distinct qualities. This type of stone and jewelry made from it has become increasingly popular in recent years in Southwestern and Native American art communities.
History and the Mine
White Buffalo Turquoise was named by the Native Americans in the area of its discovery because they saw the beauty and purity of this stone and believed it to be as rare as a white buffalo. This stone has only been discovered in one mine worldwide. This unique mineral vein was discovered in the Dry Creek Mine on the Shoshone Indian Reservation near Battle Mountain, Nevada in 1993. With only the single deposit known in existence, and a very limited quantity remaining to be mined, this stone is quite rare and valuable.
The Stone Today
In recent years, White Buffalo Turquoise jewelry has become very popular due to its uniqueness, extreme rarity, and affinity to the spiritual world. Since there is only one major mine for this particular type of product, many dealers have resorted to purposefully mislabeling similar stones, such as: Howlite, Magnesite, and even dyed turquoise to sell their products as White Buffalo Turquoise. The sheer beauty and rarity of this particular stone makes it, not only the perfect piece for anyone's jewelry collection, but also extremely valuable as the mine continues to be depleted.