ASCAS Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver         newsletter # 52 - SEPTEMBER 2008
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Fredric Arthur Sinfield died in Sydney on July 26, 2008, aged 69.
Fred was an Australian based freelance researcher, author and photographer, member of ASCAS since its foundation.
He generously supported ASCAS activity with many articles, "members' windows", questions, answers and information.
A great and untimely loss for his relatives, friends and for whoever appreciated his work.
He continues to be present among us through his articles in ASCAS website.
I believe that the best way to remember Fred is to re-read the first article he wrote for ASCAS in 2004.
Giorgio Busetto

Fred Sinfield article as presented on Newsletter # 8 December 2004

inscribed perfume bottleFred Sinfield presents 'A flacon and a lighter ' the story of a perfume flacon presented to delegates participating in 1912 in the Conference ratifying the Convention Radiotelegraphique Internationale
click here

A new article for ASCAS website

  vesta case: Chester 1905

Richard Hyman presents:

Care and Conservation of Silver for Private Collection: A Work in Progress English version

... I collect Georgian silver but, lacking the space for vitrines I display my hollowware on open shelves where they rapidly tarnish. I had either to stop collecting hollowware, accept disfigurement, commit to continued laborious and possibly deleterious cleaning, or find reliable tarnish protection. I decided on tarnish protection. I thought it would be easy; it wasn't.....

click here English version


New members

Welcome to new ASCAS members:  

Graham Borrill - England UK
Sara Dilewski - Germany
Joyce Geeser - USA
George Glastris - USA
Joan Ellis Kautz - USA
Deborah Lauritzen - USA
Bronwyn Mason - Australia
Chris Pontifex - Australia
Sue Tiffin - USA

Members' Window # 52

silver and cut-crystal salt: Genoa 19th century

Giorgio Busetto presents:

Salts Cellars from Genoa and Genoa Silver Hallmarks English version

"Torretta" is the term used for 18th century silver made in Genoa (Italy). The quality of their workmanship and their rarity make "torretta" pieces sought after and costly items for wealthy collectors.
These Genoese salt cellars aren't "torretta" silver as they were made in the 19th century and bear the "cross of St. Maurice and St. Lazarus" and the "dolphin" marks used in Genoa by the Kingdom of Sardinia from 1824 to 1872.....        click here English version


Mail to ASCAS: e-mail

Cristina Speluzzi writes:
... The cross I want to ask about is a family heirloom. I was told it is German, from the 18th. century. I'm including pictures, so someone could help me identify all the marks. It measures 27 cm. x 12 cm, not that this information is relevant...
Thank you again for all you so generously do for us, dealers and dilettantes.
Warm regards,
Cristina Speluzzi

These marks look to be German, but I don't know if they are ancient marks (Nuremberg) or modern (end 19th century) reproduction.
I trust on the help of ASCAS members for their identification.
Giorgio Busetto

Haroune Toumani writes:
... Do you can help me to date this watch?
Thank you in advance for your help.
Haroune Toumani

The mark is for London 1867. The maker is (possibly) William Carter. William Carter was listed in 1852 as a watch case maker at 7 President Street East, Goswell Road, Clerkenwell, EC. This address was subsequently changed to 35 President Street, EC where Carter was still listed in 1885. A William Carter, possibly the same individual, is listed in 1841 as a watch case maker at 22 Galway Street, Bath Street, St. Luke's.
Giorgio Busetto

Linda Dempsey writes:
... I am a new member, asking for help identifying these spoons... They are old, as the monograms are almost worn off... They are lightweight (4 total ounces for the set of six, on our postal scale) and feel more like coin silver than sterling... They do have the lion passant, which would indicate sterling, but also a beaver mark, which seems a bit of a mystery....
Any help you could give, would be appreciated...
Linda Dempsey

The maker is J.E. Ellis & Co - Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
James E. Ellis moved from Liverpool, England, to Canada in 1848 and was associated with Rossin Bros until 1852. He bought the business in that year and was joined by his son in 1862. The firm changed its name to J.E. Ellis & Co in 1877 in partnership with M.T. Cain.
The business continued until 1901.
Giorgio Busetto

Mario Galasso writes:
... I recently bought a caster marked Glasgow 1924-25 but I'm unable to identify the maker "J.W into two conjoined circles".
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Mario Galasso

Ross Macrae writes:
... I have a spoon bottom marked as follows, 1 Lyre T, worn Minerva's head, maker H stirrup D.
Can anyone identify maker, where and when he worked.
Ross Macrae

Deborah Brierty writes:
... I have attached two photos of my teapot, handed down to me by my grandmother.
I was wondering if you can tell me what the symbols on the bottom mean, it has the words Thomas Otley & Sons, Sheffield written on it.
Also do you know the value of the teapot, waiting to hear from you,

the maker is Thomas Otley & Sons, Meadow Works, 33 New Meadow St., Sheffield, c.1890 - 1900.
Obviously this teapot is silver plate and not sterling silver.
Sorry, but ASCAS do not make appraisals. I suggest comparing your teapot with the price paid for similar items sold on eBay
Giorgio Busetto

Bernard Jouret writes:
... I'm trying to identify the origin and age of a pair of candlesticks I own.
Do you may help in my research?
Thank you in advance

Bernard Jouret

Michael Deshaies writes:
... I post pictures of an item that I have in which I know nothing about. I do not recognize the hallmark as it is in bad condition.
Here are some photos.

I believe that your casket was made in Continental Europe or Middle East as it has 800 silver fineness mark but I'm unable to identify its origin.
I hope that someone of our members will be able to help you.
Giorgio Busetto

Patrick writes:
... I was hoping someone could help me identify the Maker and date of an item I have. I'm not sure what the item is but I thought it might be a napkin holder. I have included photos of item and marks.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

The maker is Walker & Hall, Electro Works, 9-15 Howard Street, Sheffield.
This mark was in use 1852-1897. I believe that your item is a toast rack.
Further information (and a photo of your mark) is available in my private website at
Giorgio Busetto

Kirk Williams writes:
... Hello. Firstly, I'd like to thank you for your great website! It has helped me in my identification of numerous pieces of silver. I have recently obtained a coffee and tea set that I have been unable to identify. I have included a few pictures, in hopes that you may be able to help identify the maker.
Any help or information that you can provide would be greatly appreciated!
Kirk Williams

I'm unable to identify the maker of your sterling silver teaset. I trust in the help of ASCAS members
Giorgio Busetto

Robert Massart writes:
... I was looking in your listing of makers of British electroplated silver in order to identify the marks on a salt spoon.
Is it possible that the maker is John Gough of Birmingham?
Do you have an idea what the other marks mean? I know that EP means electro plated; but I have no idea of the other marks.
I hope that you can help me once more.
Thanks for your taking care of my questions.
Kind regards,
The maker is John Gilbert, Birmingham, about 1876/1894.
A1 was usually adopted to indicate higher quality plating (...but I never saw an item marked A2).
I believe that the other marks had no particular meaning and were added to obtain a set of three of four marks to imitate sterling silver marking.
Any other suggestion will be highly appreciated.
Giorgio Busetto

Lisa Bennett writes:
...I am just wondering if you could help me out with a lovely little silverware object I have.
I have looked up the marks and can't find any object of this sort.
Could you please date and identify what it is made from as unsure if it is silver or not. It has a black foam like cushion in the bottom that is covered by a royal blue velvet on the top.
The measurements are as follows: width 3cm and height 5 cm approximate.
I look forward to hearing from you soon
Kind regards

I'm unable to identify the maker. Anyway your item is silverplate and not sterling silver. I believe that this is a thimble holder but any other suggestion about the maker and its use will be welcome.
Giorgio Busetto

Replies to questions

Josephine Lewis receives another reply about her silver "quaich" (see July Newsletter)
Hymie Dinerstein writes:
... Regarding the quaich and other Hanau type pieces, many of these pieces copy hallmarks from earlier Dutch pieces and it is important to make sure the style of the article is in the style of the period that its hallmark represent. There is a Dutch book, that lists 615 FAKE Dutch hallmarks and I would presume that there are now many more now since this books was first published in the 1950's when I bought the book.
Hymie Dinerstein
P.S. most of the 17th/18th century Dutch Brandy bowls have some marks that are found in this book.


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 an postal envelope sent on March 28, 1924 by Rockford Silver Plate Company, Rockford, Illinois to Lochman Brothers, Springfield, Ill.
The envelope is decorated by a contemporary image of the factory.
postal envelope used in 1924 by Rockford Silver Plate Company, Rockford, Ill.
postal envelope used in 1924 by Rockford Silver Plate Company, Rockford, Ill.

The company was founded in 1873 as the Racine Silver Plate Co in Racine, Winsconsin. In 1882 the factory there burned. The stockholders decided to rebuild in Rockford, Illinois and erected the new factory there the same year. They made silverware for the United States Jewelers' Guild which sold only through jewelry stores. About 1925 the company was bought by Raymond Sheets and became the Sheets-Rockford Silver Plate Co. The manufacture of flatware was discontinued but silverplate holloware was produced. The Sheets-Rockford Silver Co name appears in the City Directories through 1956.
(from Rainwater-Redfield, Encyclopedia of American Silver Manufacturers)


In this column we presents an abstract from a page of the "What is? Silver Dictionary"
courtesy of home page
Georgian silver nipple shield


The nipple-shield is a small protective object to be placed over a nursing woman's nipple during infant feeding.
The nipple shield (or nipple guard) is a circular, slightly convex, disc having...


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 the shelf" of this month is presented by Karin Sixl-Daniell:


by Charles Oman
Adam & Charles Black, London 1965 (first edition 1934)
English Domestic Silver by Charles Oman English Domestic Silver by Charles Oman


Closing our SEPTEMBER 2008 edition of ASCAS Newsletter I hope you have appreciated its content.
Your comments, suggestions and advice will be of great help.

My thanks to Lisa Bennett, Deborah Brierty, Linda Dempsey, Michael Deshaies, Hymie Dinerstein, Jayne Dye, Mario Galasso, Richard Hyman, Bernard Jouret, Ross Macrae, Robert Massart, Karin Sixl-Daniell, Cristina Speluzzi, Haroune Toumani, JoAnne Wilkinson, Kirk Williams 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.
ASCAS has no real property and no fees are requested nor accepted from members.
ASCAS keeps in touch with its members only through periodical newsletters, e-mails and web-site updating and ignores and is not responsible for any other activity pursued by its members.
Likewise, ASCAS is not responsible for opinions, evaluation and images displayed, and in any form published or supplied for publication, by its members who, in any case, maintain the property of their works and assure the respect of national and international legislation about Intellectual Property.
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These rules are expressly accepted by submitting the membership request.