ASCAS Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver         newsletter # 58 - MARCH 2009
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Two new articles for ASCAS website

  French silver spoons manufactured in Paris between 1766 and 1809
Giovanni Ciceri presents:
A FRENCH CANTEEN (Part) - Paris 1764/1819 - English version

In this article we present a part of a French canteen composed of pieces of various age and makers. Most pieces were manufactured and hallmarked in Paris between 1762 and 1819. The prevalent pattern is the so called fiddle thread, very popular in France from the mid of 18th century....
click here English version
  Middle Lois Betteridge, surrounded by her former students
Dorothea Burstyn presents

Celebration, News from the Canadian Metal Arts Scene English version

... Celebration, The Legacy of Lois Etherington Betteridge, was an exhibition at Jonathon's Bancroft Snell Gallery in downtown London, Ontario, from November 6 - 16, 2008. It was meant to celebrate Lois' 80th birthday, but rather than choosing the format of a solo exhibition or retrospective of her work Lois Betteridge wanted Celebration to be a group exhibition of her work and those of selected students. While there are of course many metal artists active at work in Canada, Celebration served as an introduction to "Who is who" on the modern Canadian metal arts scene. Jonathon Bancroft Snell has made a name for himself and his gallery, being an excellent promoter of modern Canadian ceramics and it is to be hoped that he will do the same for metal artists signed up with his gallery.......

click here English version

New members

Welcome to new ASCAS members:  

Andrew Brasch - USA
Marina Ciarlo' - Malta
Jackie Craig - England UK
George Fritz - USA
Laurence Joyce - England UK
Konstantin Kunstanovich - USA
Craig Rayner - Australia
Adam Thomson - USA
top page - page map

Members' Window # 58

A large milk can from Hotel Metropole in Frankfurt am Main, made by Bohrmann
Prof. David N. Nikogosyan presents:

Marks of European Silver Plate: III. Bohrmann, Hartmann & Hepp, Germany English version

In the current Member's Window, I am continuing the discussion of marks issued by the continental producers of silver plate active during the Art Nouveau period. This time I will present three rather unknown German companies (in comparison with the well-documented Wuerttemberg Metalware Factory or WMF and the renowned August Wellner & Sons Factory in Aue, Saxony).
In 2000 at the antique market "Izmailovo", Moscow, Russia, I acquired my first item of Bohrmann silver plate, a large milk can, for 15 US $. It was freezing cold (-25° C) and was difficult to use a lens, which was immediately covered by frost, originating from my breath, nevertheless, I managed to read the mark and was surprised to find that besides the name of a maker, it contained the place and the year (!) of production.....     
click here
English version

Mail to ASCAS: e-mail

Kari Helenius writes:
...Following the "Dictionary" published in February Newsletter I attach images of two zarfs. The other one has been equipped with a charka inside. The charka which seems to have been made especially for this purpose and it is attached to the zarf with a soldered screw which goes through the zarfs bottom where there is a nut below. The charka is marked in Moscow 1791.
I thought that this might interest you.
Best regards

Mario Galasso writes:
... I bought an ancient silver tray marked "800" and a mark unknown to me. I believe it is Italian, before 1935. The mark on the left is a shield with SIAP and a sort of cross inside.
Do you have any idea about the maker?
Thanks for your help
Mario Galasso
The maker of your tray is S.I.A.P. Società Argenterie Posaterie già Barberis - Pietrasanta & C - Alessandria. The firm is listed in the 1924 "Annuario Generale Ufficiale Orefici Argentieri ed Affini"
Another source quotes that in 1919 "Barberis, Pietrasanta e C. fabbricante di argenterie" transferred its premises at the corner of Palermo and Pacinotti St. in Alessandria, where they began to build a new factory.
In 1920 was founded SIAP (Società Industriale Argenterie Posaterie) that used and enlarged the factory built by Barberis, Pietrasanta e C.
In 1936 part of the building used by SIAP was bought by IMA GuercP (another firm active in silverware production).
Therefore, a reliable hypothesis is that SIAP was active between 1920 and 1936.
Giorgio Busetto

Adam Thomson writes:
... I have been unable to determine which craftsman/designer by name made this silver. I believe it is either a German or Belgian Art Nouveau tea set. Kevin Tierney from Sotheby's told me he thought it was from P. Bruckmann und Söhne of Germany. It might have been designed by Henry Van de Velde, if only because the sugar bowl has his kind of designer lines used on it. I bought it 30 years ago at auction at Sotheby's (NY) and, even after researched it in the Library of Congress, I don't know the craftsman / silversmith who made it.
Here are the makers that I believe worked for that silver manufacturer around 1900 that might have made it.
Clicking on this link you may see a detailed list of German architects, designers and silversmiths that worked for Bruckmann & Sohne and Henry van de Velde.
I will include pictures of the silver set and its hallmarks attached. Any assistance helping me to identify the last one or two stamped hallmarks its maker would be appreciated. The second to last hallmark stamp on the far right hand side looks a bit like it was made by Posen, but that name is not stamped on the piece.
I would like to get up with any people that you consider are German Art Nouveau silver experts that could help me identify this fine silver tea service. If any members know how to contact a Dr. Helmut Reuter of the Henry van de Velde Gesellschaft in Hagen, Germany or Anneliese Krekel-Aalberse in Europe let me know how to do so.
Kindest Regards
Adam Thomson

Replies to questions

Kelli Rooney receives this reply about her silver fruit basket (see February Newsletter)
Charles C. Cage writes:
...Regarding Kelli Rooney’s question about Strube & Son, the firm was active in Leipzig, Germany from 1819 until WWII. Although the firm did manufacture silver in the 19th century, by the time this piece was made (1st quarter, 20th century, I’d estimate) they were primarily luxury retailers.
Charles C. Cage

Dariusz Malinowski receives this reply about his silver candlestick (see February Newsletter)
Charles C. Cage writes:
...Regarding Dariusz Malinowski’s Russian candlestick, it is actually Polish, from the city of Warsaw when it was under Russian jurisdiction, 1852-1915. The mark on the far right -the Russian Imperial eagle- is the Warsaw city mark. "84" is the fineness of 84 zolotniks: 84/96 or .875. The assayer "WK" is Walery Kostrebski, working in Warsaw 1852-1860. The maker "Szkarlat" is Szmul Szkarlat, working ca. 1860-1904; the mark next to his - a ewer - is his trademark.
Charles C. Cage

Adam Goldsmith writes:
.. Hopefully the following information will help Dariusz Malinowski to identify his candlesticks. The candlesticks are Warsaw under Russian rule dated 1860 and assayed by Waleriana Kostrzebskiego who worked between 1852 and 1860. The maker is Szmul Szkarlat who worked from 1851 to around 1900.
Thanks for all the fabulous newsletters.
Adam Goldsmith

Robert L. Downing receives this reply about his smoker's braziers collection (see February Newsletter)
Kari Helenius writes:
...Dear Robert, Thank you for showing your collection of pipe lighters.
I have had two of those for many years without knowing what they are. I attach an image showing them. You seem to have both in your collection.
The silver one was brought by my parents from Portugal about 50 years ago. There is a mark "VEGA 18" on it.
The brass one I bought in France 1991.
Now I know, thank you very much.
I think that ASCAS is a wonderful organisation and you always learn new things from the Newsletter. Giorgio does a wonderful job month after month.
Best regards
Thanks to Kari Helenius for the image of his two smoker's braziers.
By the way, I own a small collection of four silver smokers braziers/ ember bowls/pipe lighters. They are illustrated in the silver dictionary and in other pages of my website
Moreover one of my ember bowls was the subject matter of the first "Members' Window" in ASCAS website
Giorgio Busetto

Paola Continella receives this reply about his silver soup ladle (see October Newsletter)
Philippe d'Arschot writes:
...About the question of Paola Continella on maker's mark C K (Newsletter 53).
This is the mark of Pierre KERCKX, master in Brussels from 1826 to 1843.
Philippe d'Arschot


In this column we present a page obtained from makers' brochures, books, auction catalogs, advertising or whatever other printed paper related to silver, which may be of interest for ASCAS members.
The images will be published at a "low resolution" level and for private and personal use only
This month ASCAS presents a 1891 advertising of JOSEPH RODGERS & SONS Limited
1891 advertising of JOSEPH RODGERS  & SONS Limited
Page 198 of Sheffield Advertisements, illustrating

Joseph Rodgers & Sons Limited
by Special Appontment of Her Majesty.
Warrant Confirmed in 1894
6, Norfolk St., Sheffield

This famous firm of cutlers and silversmiths was founded in 1682 and converted into a limited liability company under the style Joseph Rodgers & Sons Ltd in 1871.
Besides their factory at 6 Norfolk Street, Sheffield, the firm had showrooms at 60 London Viaduct, London and three large factories with over 2000 employees (1901). Originally makers of pen and pocket-knives the firm extended its business including every variety of cutlery, silver and electro-plated items. The firm was represented in the Great Exhibition of 1851, the International Exhibition of 1862 and the Manchester Exhibition of 1887.


In this column we presents an abstract from a page of the "What is? Silver Dictionary"
courtesy of home page
silver mote spoon: Hester Bateman 1775


The silver mote spoon (silver mote skimmer) is a type of spoon having a bowl with a pierced pattern of small holes, used to skim off floating particles of tea leaves and motes (tea dust) from a cup of tea. The handle is thin and tapering, with a sharpened point.........


In this column we present books, new or ancient, dealing with silver in all its aspects (history, marks, oddities...). This isn't a "book review" but only a fair presentation of some useful "tools" that anyone may have in the shelf of his bookcase.
ASCAS members are invited to contribute to this column
(click to enlarge images)

The "book on my shelf" of this month presents:

Old Country Silver by Margaret Holland, 1971 Old Country Silver by Margaret Holland, 1971
A commentator wrote about this book: The first to deal exclusively with silver made in all parts of the British Isles other than London, this book traces the history of the provincial silver-making from the early times. It describes silver stamped in every corner of the realm, with and sometimes without the sanction of the king or parliament. It shows how and why certain similar objects were often made differently and explains why forms and styles frequently varied from region to region, and how to recognise such characteristics.


Closing our MARCH 2009 edition of ASCAS Newsletter I hope you have appreciated its content.
Your comments, suggestions and advice will be of great help.

My thanks to Dorothea Burstyn, Charles C. Cage, Giovanni Ciceri, Jayne Dye, Mario Galasso, Kari Helenius, David N. Nikogosyan, Adam Thomson for their invaluable contributions.

Giorgio Busetto
ASCAS is a community of people having a common interest in antique silver.
It is a non-profit association without commercial links. Membership is open to whomever has a true interest in this subject matter.
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