Freshwater Pearls Information
Gorgeous Natural Freshwater Pearls USA

Enjoy reading freshwater pearls information. You'll "die" when you see these gorgeous natural non-cultured USA freshwater pearls.

Freshwater pearls information from a 1908 pearl book. Keep that in mind when reading.

American freshwater natural pearls have had many prejudices to overcome, often because of the natural indifference in regard to anything that is found at home or is easily obtainable. It has been said that, in comparison with foreign natural pearls, they had less specific gravity; that they were not so hard, and that their luster was not so good. It is certain, however, that the skin is generally smooth, and although they may not have so peculiar an orient, their brilliancy equals that of any known pearls.

Freshwater pearls Natural USA High Luster
Freshwater Pearls Natural USA High Luster

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Freshwater Clam with Natural Freshwater Pearls
Freshwater Clam with Natural Freshwater Pearls

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Sometimes these natural USA pearls are translucent and either pink or of a faintly bluish tint, like molten silver. More frequently their hue is white, rose, pale yellow, or pale copper, deepening to copper red until they resemble the most intense and highly polished copper button.

Freshwater Natural Freshwater Pearls
Freshwater Natural Freshwater Pearls

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According to the estimates of the value of European freshwater pearls given by seventeenth and eighteenth century writers, their worth was considered to be one half that of oriental pearls of approximately the same quality. Few European natural pearls, we feel sure, were ever found that possessed the wonderful beauty and brilliancy of the natural pearls found either in the Miami or the Mississippi and its many tributaries.

Natural Freshwater Pearls
Natural Freshwater Pearls

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After all the fine American pearls have been selected--buttons, baroques, turtlebacks, haystacks, wings, petals and other natural pearls that can be used in any way as a jewel on this side of the water--the balance of the material is sold by the ounce, varying in price. These are shipped to Germany, France, and Austria, where they are again selected for cheaper forms of natural freshwater pearl jewelry than are made in the United States.

Natural Freshwater Pearls
Natural Freshwater Pearls

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Of these natural pearls the baroques and slugs go mainly to Germany, while the somewhat finer freshwater natural pearls are sent to France, where they are used in artistic but inexpensive work, such as flowers and other imitative forms, and in art nouveau jewelry. Some natural USA pearls, again, are shipped to Algiers, Morocco, and Egypt, for the decorations of saddles, garments, etc., and quantities go to India to be used for medicinal purposes. In this way all the natural pearl material is utilized and even the poorest is not wasted. No better proof can be required of the wide spread appreciation of the pearl among all the races of mankind.

Natural Freshwater Pearls Golden Color
Natural Freshwater Pearls Golden Color

So extensive has become the finding of natural American pearls that great quantities have been gathered together of all varieties. At the time of this writing there are many large single lots of these natural freshwater pearls, slightly irregular, and not of fine quality, but yet of sufficient regularity of size to be termed baroque freshwater pearls.

Pink Natural Freshwater Pearls
Pink Natural Freshwater Pearls

The turtleback is a form quite prevalent among American natural pearls, and they are often matched in pairs slightly resembling each other and weighing from 10 to 100 or more grains for each pair. Some of the freshwater natural pearls are lustrous and many are of very good color and regular in form. Although differing but little in shape, they naturally are much less expensive than a finer formed pearl, and many of them have been sold for link buttons, and more especially for ear screws.

Baroque Freshwater Pearl
Baroque Natural Freshwater Pearls

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At the time of writing this freshwater pearls information (1908) there are for sale in the United States a pair of natural freshwater button earrings, almost round, not of absolutely perfect color, weighing about 140 grains, the price being $6,000: a round, slightly ovate pearl, not of the finest color, weighing 85 grains, held at $3,500; and a wonderful non-cultured pearl with a rich, faintly pink luster, round, but slightly button on each side, weighing about 44 grains, and beautiful as are American natural freshwater pearls, is held at a fanciful valuation of over $6,000.

High Luster Natural Freshwater Pearls
High Luster Natural Freshwater Pearls

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Please consult local and current laws before attempting to gather USA pearls today. There are restrictions which must be observed.

So to main types of pearl page after freshwater pearls information.

More Freshwater Pearls Information

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Have you ever found a freshwater pearl? We'd love to see a photo and read your story. Add your own page here.

Learn more freshwater pearls information here where you can see photos of USA clam shells and learn their names.

Many natural freshwater pearls were found during the pearl button clamming days here in Muscatine.

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