What Is Black Hills Gold Jewelry?

black hills jewelry

Few jewelry designs are as recognizable as Black Hills gold jewelry. Its distinctive design and colors attract the attention and adoration of many, but the story behind it is not as well-known. To appreciate its value fully, let’s take a look into what’s behind this distinctive jewelry’s name.

The Design

Black Hills gold jewelry is characterized by its grape, grapevine and leaf design depicted in yellow, rose and green gold. The signature rose and green colors are neither rare nor naturally occurring, as is sometimes suggested. Rather, they are the product of alloying. Adding copper to yellow gold produces a rose color and adding silver to yellow gold produces a green color. While the gold used in these pieces is not necessarily mined in the Black Hills, Black Hills jewelry must be crafted in this region of South Dakota to earn its title per a federal mandate.

Since they were made, the unique colors and delicate designs of the jewelry are stunning and attractive. Most pieces are made with 10-14 karat gold and should be stored carefully to preserve the color and shine. Velvet jewelry drawer dividers can provide an attractive, plush home for the jewelry. The gold can also be cleaned occasionally with soapy water and a toothbrush.

The Legend

Black Hills gold jewelry is surrounded by the allure of myth and legend. Based on the life of a prospector named Henri LeBeau, the legend of Black Hills gold jewelry involves a weary man who fell asleep during a long prospecting trek through the Black Hills in the late 1800s. While asleep, he dreamed of a creek surrounded by lush grapevines. LeBeau awoke to find a similar scene nearby. Sustained by the life-giving grapes he stumbled upon, LeBeau went on to create jewelry that was inspired by his experience in the Black Hills.

Regardless of whether events unfolded as described by this folktale, the iconic design of Black Hills jewelry is often attributed to LeBeau’s handiwork. LeBeau is said to be responsible for teaching other craftsmen his artistry, and thus for the unique heritage of the designs we have today.

While LeBeau had to endure the wilds of the Black Hills to create his iconic designs, you can get your hands on these treasures and other accessories without traveling any farther than your nearest internet-connected device. This legendary jewelry can be shipped straight from the Black Hills to your front door.

black hills jewelry
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