Native American Lithic Pendant Rattlesnake Effigy
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  1. #1
    us
    Jun 2020
    Nova Caesarea
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    Colonial & Revolutionary War period militaria, artifacts and ephemera +!

    Native American Lithic Pendant Rattlesnake Effigy

    Hi,

    I recently purchased a Native American pendant (listed as a gorget) on ebay. I knew going in that the artifact could be faked or repro, but there was enough of the genuine about it that I decided to acquire it. At worst I've purchased a very well crafted fake and an attractive decorative piece.

    Is there anyone here with some knowledge or experience with the subject of Native artifacts who might have an opinion on this piece? Authentic | Possibly Authentic | Fake

    Seller's Picture included.

    Thanks!
    Jacob

    Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    us
    Banjo Man

    May 2019
    East Central Alabama
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    The drilled hole may offer a clue. Need close-up pics of both sides of hole at different angles. Just an observation but seems strange that the hole would be right through the snake. BTW, welcome.

    Savant Banjo Picker

  3. #3
    us
    Jun 2020
    Nova Caesarea
    121
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    Colonial & Revolutionary War period militaria, artifacts and ephemera +!
    Thank you very much for the expedient reply and welcome!

    Here are some closeups of the holes. Front and back. If genuine, I believe the placement of the hole would be chosen in deference to balancing the object when worn around the neck.

    Regards,

    Jacob
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  4. #4
    Charter Member
    us
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    I saw that when it was on Ebay also but declined to bid on it. The hole did not look correct to me. Also, the back of it has been planed/shaved/gouged to reduce the thickness.

    The lines on the carving are too even. After noticing these details, like I say, I declined to place a bid. I'd say about half the artifacts on Ebay are "new". It's figuring out which half is the problem.

  5. #5
    us
    Treasure every day!

    Aug 2005
    Beautiful Florida
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    At the top of this forum page is a thread that deals with this very subject.
    A2coins likes this.
    Don't believe anything you hear and only 1/2 of what you see!

  6. #6
    Charter Member
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    I am certainly no expert, some of the stuff out there looks really good.
    A2coins and jacobgosling like this.

  7. #7
    us
    Jun 2020
    Nova Caesarea
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    Colonial & Revolutionary War period militaria, artifacts and ephemera +!
    As I said, I knew going in the item could be faked or repro. I didn't pay $10,000 for it, so I'll be satisfied to have a nice decorative piece. I'm new to ebay, but not naive. It isn't too difficult to spot the genuine Revolutionary War, Colonial and Native American items. It's not easy to fake authentic age and wear. And provenance is very important. If an Indian artifact came from a collection assembled in 1922, there's probably a better chance it's real.

    There's something about my snake pendant that makes me reluctant to entirely dismiss the possibility of authenticity. I'll have a hands-on expert examine it and maybe perform some tests. Just to satisfy my own curiosity as to what it actually is: Native American or 'Made in China'.

    But smokeythecat won't you be green with envy when the Antiques Roadshow guy tell me I possess the finest example of a late Hopewell Snake Effigy Pendant he's ever seen in 24 seasons of Antiques Roadshow, and estimates the value between $800,000 and 1.5 million!

    And are you suggesting the nail from Jesus' cross that I paid 10 Rubles for isn't real? How dare you!

    I'll have lots of other stuff to share on the forum. Some of it definitely real.

    Kind regards,
    Jacob
    Last edited by jacobgosling; Jun 04, 2020 at 04:21 PM.
    Jeff H, Toecutter and A2coins like this.

  8. #8
    us
    Jun 2020
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    Thanks newnan.

  9. #9
    Charter Member
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    Nope, won't turn green. I have everything else out there...
    Mudflap, welsbury and gunsil like this.

  10. #10
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    Jon

    Nov 2018
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    Let’s see a head on pictures of the hole with light behind it? In the first picture the hole looks to be done with a drill. Most authentic drilled pieces the hole is conical from both sides.
    quinn, Tdog and MAMucker like this.

  11. #11
    Charter Member
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    If you have a microscope or fine loop look at the surface for sanding marks or score marks. My experience with polished stone is they would sand in one direction and then the other. Its amazing when you see it on a piece. Also the holes were usually drilled with a reed full of sand as an abrasive and you will see the step down marks in the hole.
    I have several pics of dug rattlesnake shell gorgets I have not seen one on stone like that. Is that greenstone?
    Hope it is real.
    uniface and monsterrack like this.
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  12. #12
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    Mike

    Apr 2020
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    Quote Originally Posted by jacobgosling View Post
    Hi,

    I recently purchased a Native American pendant (listed as a gorget) on ebay. I knew going in that the artifact could be faked or repro, but there was enough of the genuine about it that I decided to acquire it. At worst I've purchased a very well crafted fake and an attractive decorative piece.

    Is there anyone here with some knowledge or experience with the subject of Native artifacts who might have an opinion on this piece? Authentic | Possibly Authentic | Fake

    Seller's Picture included.

    Thanks!
    Jacob

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Braver than me, I wouldn't take the risk.
    GaRebel1861 likes this.
    🐜 🎤 Columbus, Georgia

  13. #13
    us
    Jun 2009
    Florida & Hong Kong
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    Since you asked for opinions, I'd guess it's not very old. The style is wrong, the workmanship is wrong, the material looks wrong; I can't really find one thing that's right about the piece.

    There were a couple more pictures on the auction that show some redflags. The first one is the side profile, it looks like someone was trying to make a celt. You don't see many celts reworked into gorgets. The second one shows what looks like modern grinder work to me.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  14. #14

    Mar 2016
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    Why would someone want to hang something that heavy around their neck?

    I would think some time would be spend thinning it out quite a bit more to lighten the weight.
    Toecutter, unclemac and RGINN like this.
    This Communication HEREBY Serves as OFFICIAL NOTICE That All Messages in This Thread Have Been REVIEWED. FURTHERMORE, All Messages of Positive Nature SHALL IRREVOCABLY Be Considered "LIKED" INSOFAR as Applicable to This Forum. FINALLY, All Discrimination is Strictly PROHIBITED.

  15. #15
    Charter Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by IMAUDIGGER View Post
    Why would someone want to hang something that heavy around their neck?

    I would think some time would be spend thinning it out quite a bit more to lighten the weight.
    Same impression I got...
    I'll sleep when I'm dead

 

 
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