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tline3open  Gorham Closing It's Doors

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Author Topic:   Gorham Closing It's Doors
Bob Schulhof

Posts: 194
Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 05-23-2002 10:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob Schulhof     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have heard recently that Gorham will be closing it's doors this year. My heart sunk as it meant to me that the end of the American Silver Era is officially over- replaced forever by stainless steel.

One question I would like to hear some opinions on is how will this affect the collector market? There are three choices:

1. Positively- anyone who wants Sterling Silver will have to buy it on the collector/replacement market since no new product will be available. Silver could actually become a very in thing to have.

Also there will finally be a finite supply of the classic patterns.

2. Negatively- Fewer people will purchase Sterling, or see it in the stores, people will forget that it exists and not care.

3. Not at all. The new product really didn't affect collectors anyway.

What do you think?

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11377
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 05-23-2002 11:33 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
See June's 03-18-2002 Gorham Confronts the Modern post. It mentions that Samuel J. Hough believes that "the massive [Gorham] Rhode Island factory will be closed within two years."

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Posts: 122
Registered: Mar 2002

iconnumber posted 05-24-2002 03:12 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for smfc75     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Does anybody know if Gorham is actually getting out of the silver business, or are they planning to move production to another location (overseas perhaps?). There hasn't been anything in the press that I've been able to find - not even speculation.

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11377
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 05-25-2002 04:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Tuesday April 23, 2002 5:05 pm Eastern Time
Press Release
SOURCE: Brown-Forman Corporation

Silver, China Manufacturing to Shift to Other U.S. Plants and Overseas Facilities

LAWRENCEVILLE, N.J., April 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Lenox, Inc., a subsidiary of Brown-Forman Corporation (NYSE: BF.B BF.A), announced today a consolidation of its U.S. production facilities. The action will move additional production to the Lenox factories at Pomona, New Jersey, and Kinston, North Carolina, and result in additional sourcing of china giftware from overseas facilities.

The Gorham Silver factory in Smithfield, Rhode Island will cease production of sterling flatware in mid-December 2002. The equipment and production will be moved to the Lenox factory in Pomona, New Jersey.

The decision to relocate the sterling silver flatware production is based on economies of scale. The 160,000-square-foot Smithfield facility is too large for the current and planned volume. Utilizing available factory space at Pomona will reduce overhead costs. There are approximately 62 jobs that will be eliminated at Smithfield. The Smithfield factory and property will be offered for sale upon completion of the closing. .....

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Bob Schulhof

Posts: 194
Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 05-25-2002 11:19 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob Schulhof     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks. Looks like it will still exist.

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Richard Kurtzman

Posts: 759
Registered: Aug 2000

iconnumber posted 05-27-2002 12:15 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Richard Kurtzman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Is that good or bad?

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Bob Schulhof

Posts: 194
Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 05-27-2002 09:50 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob Schulhof     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I don't know. That is why I asked the three questions at the top.

To me It is good because it means that there is still a market for silver flatware among the general public.

For me it is bad because they essentially keep reproducing antiques.

What is your opinion?

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Posts: 327
Registered: Mar 2000

iconnumber posted 05-31-2002 07:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for t-man-nc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As a collector of the Alvin Flatware, I go through this every time I make a purchase. Lisa began collecting Old Orange Blossom By Alvin with her Grandmother when she was a child... When Alvin Burned in January of 1925 and then sold out to Gorham in 1928, Gorham kept the Alvin Silver Company as a separate Division / Company. When Alvin closed its doors and Gorham Began to make the Pieces based on the Alvin Patents, what we saw was a preference for all Alvin Pieces and some claim there is a difference in the weight and feel.

I have Weighted many pieces of both and made a number of measurements and the Pieces do not differ in any noticeable amount.

I though will only buy the Alvin pieces, and they have gotten out of this world in pricing....

So what might be noticed is that a perceived difference between the pieces made in RI vs. NJ will become and issue.

But as always the older pieces with the pleasant patina seems to bring a warm familiarity to the touch, sight and other senses...

Is there any speculation as to any change in the Gorham Marks when they move....?

I know that a number of manufactures have moved, been bought out, merged over the years and the silver is still collected... I mean look at us.. :-)

So in closing, it is another chapter in the continuing cycle that many that visit this site participate in and several (most) work very hard to preserve, for those of us to come, in future generations... I would love to visit the future to see the changes that will occur long after I am gone, but no doubt that will never happen...

I wonder what Jabez would think.....?????

Just a silly old man that goes by "Smaug"...:-)

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