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tline3open  Unusual very old 1865 Tiffany pattern, what?

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Author Topic:   Unusual very old 1865 Tiffany pattern, what?
mdhavey

Posts: 164
Registered: Dec 2003

iconnumber posted 10-03-2004 01:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mdhavey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I recently bought eleven of these forks (at a yard sale, of all things.) I'm perplexed by the pattern--even Replacements.com doesn't list this one, perhaps someone out there knows??

Also, what to make of this 1865 patent?

What does 'J.P. Patent' mean? I'm confused about the "J.P."
Thanks for this forum's always lucid responses!
Michael

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swarter
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Posts: 2920
Registered: May 2003

iconnumber posted 10-03-2004 01:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for swarter     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
J.P. is John Polhamus (AKA John Polhemus) who held many flatware design patents.

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William Hood

Posts: 271
Registered: Apr 2000

iconnumber posted 10-03-2004 06:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for William Hood     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Swarter is correct. J.P. was the mark of John Polhamus, silver maker of New York City. Much of the early silverware retailed by Tiffany & Co. was made by him. See discussion about him as well as examples of his patterns sold by Tiffany on pp. 24-28 in Tiffany Silver Flatware, by Hood, Berlin and Wawrynek.

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William Hood

Posts: 271
Registered: Apr 2000

iconnumber posted 10-04-2004 11:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for William Hood     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for posting the pics. Unfortunately, I do not recognize the pattern. It's not one of those by John Polhamus discussed/illustrated in the article by Diana Cramer, "The Patterns of the George W. Shiebler Co. and its Predecessors," Silver Magazine, January/February 1991, pp. 26-29.

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swarter
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Registered: May 2003

iconnumber posted 10-04-2004 01:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for swarter     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
This pattern is not among those illustrated in the Carpenters' Tiffany Silver, either, but I have a copy of Diana Cramer's file of John Polhamus and Henry Hebbard patents which she sent to me when she was preparing that article. It contains a patent drawing, poorly reproduced, which appears to be this pattern. It is patent number 2212, issued to John Polhamus on Oct 31, 1865; it bears no pattern name (none of the patents do) nor assignee.

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William Hood

Posts: 271
Registered: Apr 2000

iconnumber posted 10-04-2004 02:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for William Hood     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In response to Swarter's input, I logged on to the U.S. Patent Office website and found the original patent application for design patent 2212, which includes a rather crude drawing of the pattern. It is presumably the same drawing that Cramer sent Swarter.

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mdhavey

Posts: 164
Registered: Dec 2003

iconnumber posted 10-04-2004 08:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for mdhavey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I knew you guys were good, but my word, you are good. This research is fascinating. For one thing I didn't know you could find individual patent applications from the mid 19th century on the Patent Office website.

I wonder if there is any way short of the Tiffany archives of finding out how many examples of the pattern were made.

Thanks!

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William Hood

Posts: 271
Registered: Apr 2000

iconnumber posted 10-04-2004 10:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for William Hood     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Regrettably, the Tiffany archives has no information on the number of examples of pieces made in its own patterns, much less that of the pieces in patterns made by others and retailed by Tiffany and Co.

[This message has been edited by William Hood (edited 10-04-2004).]

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