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Rare Nashville, Tennessee Coin Silver Dessert Spoon by John S. Britain

Rare Nashville, Tennessee Coin Silver Dessert Spoon by John S. Britain
click for more pictures for item 20200411-07
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Offered is an extremely rare example of the work of a Southern silversmith with the surname 'Britain' - now believed to be John S. Britain, working in Nashville in the 1835-36 timeframe, or James Sackett Britain, born in Sparta, TN in 1815 and working as a silversmith first in Tennessee and then in Alabama. It is probable the two men are either a single silversmith or are related. Although much remains to be discovered about the silversmiths with the surname 'Britain', it is clear from the style of this piece that it is from the 1825-45 range, and unlikely to be be much earlier or later. This is only the second piece I've seen with this mark - the other was a sauce ladle sold with two other sauce ladles (one by Asa Blanchard, the other by W. P. Loomis) at auction through New Orleans Auction Galleries on May 31, 2015. The three ladles brought $2,400 together. This spoon features a period engraved script "H" monogram and a clear, well-struck maker's mark. This piece measures about 7 1/4 inches in length and weighs about 30 grams. Condition is very good overall, with minor signs of wear and normal use, but no major dents and no splits or repairs. All in all a lovely and rare example of this Tennessee coin silver mark!

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