Yellow Hebron Trade Beads
Hebron beads, also known as Kano beads, are indeed a type of vintage trade beads with a rich history. They were made using salts from the Dead Sea and date back to the mid-1800s and even earlier. The city of Hebron, located in the West Bank, has a long tradition of glassmaking that dates back to the Phoenician period, making it one of the oldest cities in the world associated with this craft.
Historically, Hebron was a significant center for glassmaking and bead production, and it continued to attract visitors even after the decline of glass beadmaking following the Crusader invasion of Tyre in Lebanon. The city was renowned for its glass objects, including coarse glass beads called Harish and Munjir, which were widely traded throughout the Muslim world. Harish beads were smaller, while Munjir beads were larger.
The common color of Hebron beads is a dull yellow, but they also come in shades of blue, green, and occasionally black, although these colors are more difficult to find. The beads made in Hebron were highly valued by antique bead collectors and are often referred to as "Kano beads."
The trading of Hebron beads extended beyond the region, reaching as far as Egypt, the Nile, Sudan, and even Ghana. In the 1930s, A.J. Arkell recorded that Sudanese women sold Hebron beads to Hausa traders, who then further processed the beads by grinding the ends to make them rounded. This process facilitated stringing the beads together on a strand. The Hausa traders, naming them after the chief of the city, called these beads "Kano beads," leading to a myth that glass beads were prepared in Kano.
Picture is an example, yours will be similar.
Richly-textured Hebron beads in an earthy yellow color. These beads are becoming harder and harder to find.
This strand is not intended to be a ready-to-wear necklace. Although the strand can be worn "as is," the raffia holding it together is not durable and may break with use. For this reason, we recommend that you restring the beads before wearing them.