American Coin and Sterling Silver Colonial through Art Nouveau
All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1295760 (stock #2455f)
Old Friends
One of John Polhamus' (NYC) early patterns, "Oriental" was later produced by George Shiebler. This example adds a Tiffany & Co. provenance, as it was retailed by that company, whose name appears on the reverse. Other marks include "J.P. Patent 1855" and "Sterling."

It is a large crumber, aka crumb knife, measuring 10 7/8" long and just touching 3.0 T. oz. The flat blade which characterizes the form, is a 6 1/2" by 2 1/4" oblong with a raised, scalloped edge around three sides...

All Items : Silver : Coin Silver : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1295529 (stock #2453f)
Old Friends
Measuring 7" long and weighty at nearly 1.5 T. oz., this fork is marked "J.P." for New York's John Polhamus, "Patent 1855," and with the retailer's name, Pittsburgh's "J.B. McFadden & Son." It may be a tea, dessert, or lunch fork.

The pattern is referred to as "Shell," and sometimes "Leaf." The motif was popular in the period, and produced by several manufacturers. This is strongly akin to Gorham's "Josephine," patented in the same year...

All Items : Silver : Coin Silver : Serving Pieces : Pre 1900 item #1295348 (stock #2452f)
Old Friends
Measuring 6 3/16" long and weighing just short of .7 T. oz., this sugar spoon likely dates from the 1860s.

It traces to the Boston area, being stamped "Harry Raynes" for the Lowell, Massachusetts retailer. It is also marked "Coin," but is absent a manufacturer's mark. Undoubtedly, though, it was produced in New England.

The handle has a plain, rounded end, a tipt backside, and is engraved in a delicate, stylized flower or grass motif that suggests early Aesthetic influences...

All Items : Silver : Coin Silver : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1295190 (stock #2451f)
Old Friends
A period piece made in Boston c. 1860, this solid, coin silver nut pick measures 5" long and is relatively heavy at just over .4 T. oz.

It has a "Reverse Tipt" handle with a finely engraved front with detailing that resembles engine turning.

There is an Old English "M" monogram.

It is in flawless condition, free of any wear or damage. The engraving remains crisp, the upturned, pointed end is without nicks or burrs, and the finish has a warm patina...

All Items : Silver : Coin Silver : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1294793 (stock #2448f)
Old Friends
Dating somewhere between the early 1850s and mid 1860s, this 7" long, weighty at just over 1.5 T. oz., fork is stamped "Gorham & Co." and "Coin." It likely was a tea or dessert fork, although it could have been a lunch place piece.

The markings are not readily found, and while a standard motif for the period, the "French Thread" pattern was not one that Gorham seemed to produce in significant quantity, so this is a doubly unusual piece.

It is engraved "A.L...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1294716 (stock #2447f)
Old Friends
A late 19th century pattern, Durgin's "Empire" incorporates imagery reflective of the notions of majesty, nobililty, and the pattern namesake, imperial realms. This includes a dominant crown. cornucopia, a torch and flame, a wreath and festoons of ribbons and flowers.

This example is an unusual form server that measures 9 1/2" long and weighs a relatively heavy 2.9 T. oz.

It has a flat blade, with a rounded edge. The upper edge is scalloped and decorated with pattern elements...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1293890 (stock #2440f)
Old Friends
A full size dinner fork at 7 1/2" long, this is exceptionally heavy at nearly 2.2 T. oz.

It is marked "Sterling," "Patent," and "Starr & Marcus" for the New York City retailer.

Made by John Wendt, it does not carry an official pattern name, but has come to be known as "Diana," in reference to Diana Cramer, silver scholar, former editor of "Silver Magazine," and Wendt authority.

An 1860s design, it is quite similar to John Polhamus' "Armor" of the same period. Both of them bespeak th...

All Items : Silver : Coin Silver : Southern : Pre 1900 item #1293794 (stock #2439f)
Old Friends
The firm of Mitchell & Tyler occupies a prominent place in the history of mid 19th century Richmond, Virginia silver production. A successor firm to that established by William Mitchell c. 1818, sources date its years of operation from 1845 to 1866.

The style of this 5 1/2" long, just over .5 T. oz., coin silver teaspoon locates it early in that period, well before the Civil War.

It is a "Reverse Tipt" pattern with a feathered script "M" on the front of the handle.

In very good cond...

All Items : Silver : Souvenir Spoons : Pre 1900 item #1293697 (stock #2438f)
Old Friends
A cast item that measures 5" long and weighs .7 T. oz., this piece was made by Gorham and is stamped with the company's "lion, anchor, G" emblem and "Sterling" on the backside.

Highly detailed, the imagery is iconic. The bowl portrays the Chicago Herald building constructed in 1891, which date appears on the lower portion of the handle. There is a pennant that reads "Herald" flying from the flagpole atop the building.

Close inspection reveals a figure standing on a pediment placed on a...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Hollowware : Pre 1930 item #1293455 (stock #2436f)
Old Friends
Measuring 6" in diameter, standing 1/2" high, and weighing a solid 3.6 T. oz., this plate or dish sits on a 3 7/16" wide rimmed base.

It is stamped with model number "256" on the underside, along with "S. Kirk & Son Co.," used 1896-1924, and "925/1000."

It is an elegant, highly finished item. The has a rolled and lined edge, and fine engraving on the upper surface. The center is concave and has a brushed underside.

It is in mint condition. The base is even, and the overall piece i...

All Items : Silver : Coin Silver : Flatware : Pre 1837 VR item #1293332 (stock #2435f)
Old Friends
A fully formed, "Reverse Tipt," design that mimics a tea or tablespoon, this just over .2 T. oz., "miniature," piece is only 3 5/8" long.

Uncertain to purpose, it may be for salt, coffee, or for a child's use.

Dating from the 1830s, it is stamped "Mead Adriance & Co." for the early Saint Louis firm. The front is engraved "MEW" in a fancy, feathered script.

It is in very good condition. The handle remains well-formed and the engraving is crisp. The bowl is free of tip wear, althoug...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1293245 (stock #2434f)
Old Friends
Measuring a substantial 10" long and weighing a robust 3.6 T. oz., this large item is generally thought to be an early form ice cream server, although it is sometimes identified as a vegetable or pudding spoon.

It has a large, oval shaped serving end that measures 4 1/4" long and 2 1/2" at the widest. This has a slightly concave, but essentially flat, surface and an upraised, scalloped edge around about two-thirds of the margin. The surface has a pale gold wash and is engraved in a period ...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Hollowware : Pre 1900 item #1293071 (stock #2432f)
Old Friends
Typically referred to as a string holder, this item is identified in the 1898 Gorham catalog (see image 3) as a twine holder.

It is stamped with the number "S3044" on the lower top rim, as well as "Sterling" and Gorham's "lion, anchor, G" emblem.

It stands 3 1/2" tall and 3 1/8" in diameter. Many examples of the form have silver tops and bottoms. This is a less common combination of a fitted, sterling top paired with a brilliant period cut glass base. The top has a rolled lower rim and...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1292611 (stock #2429f)
Old Friends
A novel item stamped "Patent No 11774" and with an "O, lion, anchor, queen's head," along with "WV&S," this solid sterling silver item was made in Birmingham, England in 1888 by William Vale & Sons.

A olive or pickle fork, it measures 7 3/4" long and weighs just under .9 T. oz. It is comprised of a central tube which moves within an outer sleeve that has a four tine fork end. The inner element is attached to a fitted cross bar that forms a pusher that slides up and down, enabling it to nud...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1292117 (stock #2425f)
Old Friends
Singular in both design and form, this 7 5/8" long, just over 1.4 T. oz., server was made by New York's John Wendt.

The pattern, "Moresque," dates from 1873 and represents the epitome of the broad band of Islamic and Renaissance Revival designs from that period. These include Whiting's "Arabesque," Tiffany's "Persian," and Gorham's "Raphael" and "Byzantine," among others.

Curiously, "Moresque" has four variants, and possibly more permutations. The handle is sometimes upturned and someti...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1920 item #1292013 (stock #2424f)
Old Friends
International's "Brandon" is a unembellished design that dates from 1913. It appears to derive from the same Colonial Revival impulse that generated such contemporaneous popular designs as Durgin's "Fairfax," Gorham's "Plymouth," and Towle's "Mary Chilton," among others.

This example is a 3 7/8" long, .4 T. oz., child's food pusher.

It is a completely original, factory produced, item, not made up. The flat blade is 1 1/2" wide and has rounded shoulders.

It is without a monogram or ...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1291921 (stock #2423f)
Old Friends
Saratoga chip servers are by nature highly specialized items and, relatedly, are not particularly common.

Functionally, they have to be large, and that is the case with this example in the late 19th century pattern "Hope," produced by Howard Sterling Company of Providence, Rhode Island, later Mount Vernon of New York. It measures 8 1/8" long overall and weighs approximately 1.7 T. oz.

The story of the piece lies in the extravagance of the bowl, which in this case measures 4 1/8" by 3 1/...

All Items : Silver : Sterling : Flatware : Pre 1900 item #1291827 (stock #2422f)
Old Friends
This mid 19th century, coin silver spoon measures 8 11/16" long and weighs 1.4 T. oz.

It has a broad, "Tipt" end, high shoulders off the bowl, and a generously proportioned, 3" long by 1 7/8" at the widest, scallop shell bowl.

There is a fancy, feathered script "HMM" monogram on the front of the handle.

It is stamped with the name of Philadelphia retailer "S.M. Hopper," and a three part "arrow, W, shield" pseudo hallmark. In his benchmark work "Manufacturers' Marks on American Coin ...

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