Gorham "Narragansett" Style No. 275 Sterling Long Pickle Fork
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Some years ago, "The Magazine Antiques" produced an article about Gorham's fabled 1880s "Narragansett" design silver. An opulent line, it featured a variety of sea forms reflecting (and reputedly molded directly from in some instance) sea flora and fauna found in Rhode Island's Narragansett Bay and nearby coastland.
That article spawned (pun intended) an intensified interest in this already enchanted, and immensely costly, pattern. It also prompted the assignment of the label "Narragansett" to a variety of other contemporaneous pieces that Gorham produced in a similar, but not as complex, style.
This 7 5/8" long, .6 T. oz., two tine pickle or olive fork falls within this latter category. It is item number "275," as stamped on the backside, along with the Gorham "lion, anchor, G" emblem and "Sterling."
It has a single, realistic, cast shell laid on the end of a stylized, twisted and notched handle that has an Aesthetic sensibility about it. The shell, stamped with a "9," is secured with a loop that wraps around its upper end. This very shell form is incorporated in some examples of "Narragansett."
The tines are large scale and have satin matte finishes. There is an Aesthetic sensibility to all of this.
It is in mint condition, without bends or damage, showing no visible wear, and having a fine finish. This appears to have been valued more as an artful item than a utilitarian one, and thereby preserved in a pristine state.