ART hound

Geneva Anderson digs into art

Oakland Museum releases photos of the historic 19th century gold jewelry box stolen on January 9, 2013

This Gold Rush-era quartz and gold jewelry box (7 x 9 x 7 inches, ca 1869-78) was stolen from the Oakland Museum’s permanent collection on January 9, 2013.  It was made by San Francisco goldsmith A. Andrews and is signed.  Photo: courtesy OMCA

This Gold Rush-era quartz and gold jewelry box (7 x 9 x 7 inches, ca 1869-78) was stolen from the Oakland Museum’s permanent collection on January 9, 2013. It was made by San Francisco goldsmith A. Andrews and is signed. Photo: courtesy OMCA

The Oakland Museum of California (OMCA) has just released photos and a detailed description of the Gold Rush-era quartz and gold jewelry box stolen from its permanent collection on January 9, 2013.  The historic jewelry box, was made between 1869 and 1878 by A. Andrews, a San Francisco goldsmith, and is signed.  The artifact features a rectangular moulded top and base that rests on four feet formed of four miniature female figures depicting allegorical California.  It is seven inches in height; nine inches on length; and seven inches in depth. The top pilasters and mouldings are of veined gold quartz in tones of grey and cream with veining of gold.  The interior of the top is recessed and engraved in full relief with scene of the early days of the Union and Central Pacific Railroads, mounted Native Americans, herds of buffalo, and a train of cars.  The gold quartz is cut and set in mosaic fashion in the top of the lid, exterior and the sides are gold veined quartz.  (Read  ARThound’s 1.9.2013 coverage here.)

Reward:  A reward of $12,000 is offered for the safe recovery of the stolen artifact.

Anyone with any information about the burglary is encouraged to immediately contact the Oakland Police Department’s Major Crimes Section at (510) 238-3951 or the TIP line at (510) 777-2805. The reward is subject to certain terms and conditions required by the insurer, including that the reward claimant not have any involvement in the theft or any previous or post-theft complicity.  Questions about the Jewel Casket artifact or the Oakland Museum of California should be directed to 510-318-8460 or info@museumca.org.

 In an open letter to the public appearing on the OMCA website January 9, 2013, OMCA director Lori Fogarty, wrote—“We are appealing to the public for assistance in recovering the artifacts stolen in November and in this latest incident. Beyond their monetary value, these objects convey the story of California and our heritage and are held in the public trust to be cared for into perpetuity for the learning and enjoyment of Museum visitors. We hope that, thought this broad media effort and the attendant reward, we will be successful in gaining assistance in bringing these objects once again to the Museum and our community.”  More information can be found at museumca.org/reward.

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January 16, 2013 - Posted by | Oakland Museum of California | , , , ,

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