LUCKY STONES OF THE GREAT LAKES
Often found washed up on the beaches of the Great Lakes, lucky stones are not actually stones at all, but small, dime-sized white bones that appear the have the letter "L" carved into one side.
Sizes of lucky stones range from anywhere to the size of a pinky to nearly an inch long. Their color is reminescent of a polished ivory.
As is suggested by their name, these small stones are thought to bring good luck to those who keep them close.
Lucky stones come from the sheepshead fish, or freshwater drum. They're otoliths, or ear-bones. Thes ebalance receptors help the fish manuevor through the water.
Counting the the rings inside of an otolith can help determine the age of a fish.
Although lucky stones are often attributed to Lake Erie, most fish have three pairs of otoliths
Some lucky stones appear to be inscribed with the letter L, while others look like they have the letter J.
These markings appear naturally on the otoliths, and each letter indicates whcih side of the fish they were grown on.
The J stones come from the right side of the fish and the L stones come from the left side.
Although my familiarity with lucky stones stems from the Great Lakes, otoliths have historical precedence in other locations worldwide!
HERE is a great article about lucky stones in relation to Brazillian shell sites.