Nestled in the rolling Cerrillos Hills just south of Santa Fe NM, The Cerrillos Turquoise Mines are the oldest and most prolific of prehistoric mines in North America. Revered for centuries for its incredible beauty and connection to the divine, Cerrillos Turquoise was carried great distances from the Turquoise Trail along ancient trade routes and is found in sites throughout the Americas. Sacred Aztec and Mayan ceremonial pieces are adorned with this precious stone, as are the crown jewels of Spain.
Around the turn of the 20th century, Tiffany & Co. recognized the beauty and value of this prized natural gem. Cerrillos Turquoise was featured in their jewelry collections in the late 1800's and early 1900's and it is what inspired the classic "blue box" color that is synonymous with Tiffany & Co. to this day.
Currently, in the Cerrillos Hills, a few individuals have small mining claims where mining is limited to the use of hand tools and the skillfulness of the miner. The mining methods that we use are noninvasive and environmentally sound. We do not use explosives, heavy machinery, or dangerous chemicals in our mining processes.
Cerrillos Turquoise is gathered by hand from our mines Las Carlitas. The Carlita Mines produce some of the finest gem quality turquoise available today. Ranging from icy white, robin egg blue, to deep emerald green in color, these stones are hand gathered, cut, and polished by miner, jewelry designer and gallery owner, Riana Peaker.
Riana continues the tradition of using this beautiful turquoise in her own original jewelry designs, in the original designs of her father Waylan Peaker, and in the jewelry of the many exceptional Native American artists she works with. Please, visit our Cerrillos Turquoise page for some examples of Cerrillos Turquoise jewelry.
A view of the Cerrillos hills.