Recently I acquired some beautiful Turritella Fossil Agates to work in to some statement necklaces and earrings. I loved them at first site but the more I worked with them, the more I saw in the stone. They are filled with ancient history and warmth and I started to wonder about their journey to my jewelry bench.
WHAT IS TURRITELLA FOSSIL AGATE?
Formed over 50 million years ago, Turritella Fossil is the popular name used for a fossiliferous agate from the Green River Formation of Wyoming. It contains high spired fossil snails that stand out in a white to tan color in contrast to the brownish agate.
Turritella Agate formed in the Rocky Mountains and what are now Colorado, Utah and Wyoming. The area had rugged mountains separated by basins. Lakes formed at the bottom of the basins had the perfect food sources for the freshwater snail. Rains carrying sediments from the mountains to the lakes covered the snails leaving their shells at the bottom of the lakes. As groundwater moved through the sediments, small amounts of silica dissolved and filled the cavities of the snail shells and the spaces in between. Once silicified, the entire mass of fossils formed brown fossileferous agate (aka chalcedony) we now know as Turritella Fossil Agate.
These snails are not in the marine genus Turritella, (contrary to the common name). They are actually freshwater snails in the species Elimia tenera. The rock varies from soft sandstone to a dense chalcedony and is often referred to as Turritella limestone or Turritella Agate.
Turritella Agate is considered a stone of strength and protection, wisdom and healing. It is a stone of connection to personal roots and ancestry and even your own past and believed to attract good luck and foster love.
WHAT IS AMMONITE FOSSIL?
The ammonite mollusk which is now extinct was a shelled cephalopod, usually appearing in a coiled, spiral shape. Their extinction happened at the same time as the extinction of dinosaurs. Although many believe it to be the ancestor of the nautilus, they are actually closer related to coleoids like octopus and squid.
Ammonites inhabited oceans around the world and are now found as fossils in marine rocks. Because of their rapid evolution and wide distribution, ammonite fossils are a useful tool for dating and indexing rocks. They are mostly collected in the bed of the River Gandaki in Nepal where it cuts through Jurassic sediments.
Ammonite is said to be a powerful wealth stone and brings prosperity to the wearer.
The warm browns and creams of turritella or ammonite fossil jewelry make them a great choice for year round fashion. Pair with neutrals from white or cream to rich browns and black or try shades of green, blue, terra cottas or reds. These great neutrals from ancient times work with them all!
Ana Maria Andricain
Ana is a metal clay certified artist creating handcrafted nature inspired artisan jewelry from her Baton Rouge studio. If you love natural gemstones and metal, welcome home!