American Silverplate…

For many years, doing business as Silver Season, I bought and sold  American silverplate, an important industrial product in the late 19th and early 20th century. In the pages listed here, I share some of what I have learned.

American Silver Booklets links to free digital booklets available about American silver.

International Silver provides background information about the company and its products.

Oneida links you to history and examples from this innovative American silver company.

Resources links you to important information resources.

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9 Responses to American Silverplate…

  1. Elizabeth Fowler says:

    Do you, by chance, know the year that the U.S. patent was first issued for silverplating (or electro-depositing?) Obviously, it was after Elkington in the early 1840s, but after that I am lost.

    • SilverSeason says:

      You are not the only one who is lost. I will go back and check my reference books, but my recollection is that the U.S. manufacturers who were already making metal cutlery out of Britannia and similar alloys read the Elkington patent and began to experiment with the process. Therefore it is usually said that the Rogers Bros. offered silverplated objects for sale in 1947. They do not say that they invented or patented anything, although they probably made some improvements. I do not know the international patent situation at that time, but if Elkington did not have a patent in the U.S. it would have been extremely difficult for them to enforce their rights here.

      Nancy Gluck at Silver Threads

  2. Candi Duncan says:

    I am collecting Floral by Wallace, do you know how many different pieces were made in this pattern? Do you know if there is a list of the pieces? I have a nice collection but am still surprized with a new piece occasionally.
    Thank you for any help you can give me.

    • SilverSeason says:

      Sorry, I have no special information. It is a beautiful and interesting pattern. I suggest you contact some dealers and also the Replacements Ltd. website. Their inventory lists are often helpful and they have a consumer-advisory service.

  3. Pamela Bender says:

    Great site! I’m doing some research on a partial set of silver-plate I received as we cleaned out my grandmother’s house. I am 99.9% sure it is Wm. Rogers Guild/Cadence pattern (1932). I’m trying to figure out two things — first, during what years this pattern was sold (I’m guessing it was purchased sometime in the late 30’s/early 40’s) and second, what a complete set would have included. This appears to be a set for 8, but I’m not positive, and it’s not in its original case, so I can’t use the space available for guidance.

    Are their resources you could recommend that would offer this sort of information? Thanks!

    • SilverSeason says:

      Some of your questions I have answered by email. The questions of what was a silver “set” often comes up.

      Silver service sets have varied a lot over the years. In older patterns, the standard set was usually service for six, but during the 1930s it was usually for eight. A common set would be

      8 dinner or viande knives
      8 dinner or viande forks
      8 salad forks
      8 teaspoons
      2 serving spoons
      butter knife
      sugar spoon

      To this was often added

      8 soup spoons
      8 additional teaspoons
      other serving pieces.

      The silver companies wanted to sell silver so they didn’t like to make the standard set too big. Buyers could always add to the set, and were expected to do so.

  4. V R Little says:

    Hello!

    I am new at this so don’t know where to start. First I am looking for a list (or lists?) of American silver plate patterns. Or, I would like a fully illustrated listing of patterns – on line, in books, and? or…..

    Which books will be of most use in identifying old (very old) patterns of silver plate – mostly American? Is there an online community sharing information (and enthusiasm) for old silver plate? If so, how do I get in touch?

    Any help or direction you can give me will be most welcome.

    Cheers! ( and THANK YOU!)

    Verna R. Little – in beautiful (and very cold) Ithaca, New York

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