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tline3open  Reed & Barton 950 / 1000 vase with photos

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Author Topic:   Reed & Barton 950 / 1000 vase with photos

Posts: 414
Registered: Jun 2002

iconnumber posted 12-06-2003 02:51 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Marc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Hi there,

I have a medium sized (15" tall), 40 oz., unweighted, Art Nouveau vase made by Reed & Barton and showing the hand hammer marks and luster of Gorham Martle'.

It is marked on the bottom with the old mark (Bird - R - Lion) and "950" over "1000" "fine", and the pattern # "212" and "A".

I have seen a ton of R & B sterling marked "925" over "1000". Also, my references do not mention the higher quality .950 silver.

Did Reed & Barton make the .950 line to compete with Gorham's Martle' line (also .950), or is there another explanation.

Thanks for your help, and and here are the photos.


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Posts: 1502
Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 12-07-2003 08:37 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great vase , Marc! How much you want for it smile?

It seems clear that R&B must have made an attempt to compete with Martele. The fact that no references seem to acknowledge it leads me to believe that is wasn't terribly successful. You probably have a real rarity there.

Since Reed & Barton have managed to maintain their independence over the years, it seems there would be a good chance that they still have records of their earlier products. Maybe they can tell us more?


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June Martin
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Posts: 1223
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 12-07-2003 07:43 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for June Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Reed and Barton made a concerted effort to push their sterling line beginning in 1889. The company went into debt to purchase dies, tools, materials, etc. The treasurer, George Brabrook, speculated on silver by purchasing large amounts of it just prior to passage of the Sherman Silver Purchase Act of 1890 after which silver prices mounted rapidly. According to The Whitesmiths of Taunton, old employees told of seeing storage vaults piled to the roof with silver bars. Brabrook was known to have an artistic disposition and believed in the idea of restricted output sold at high prices. Perhaps this led him to spearhead an effort to go head to head with the handmade silverwares that Gorham was experimenting with in the latter half of the 1890's. Any such effort would have been short lived as William Dowse was installed as president in 1901. Dowse's philosophy was completely opposite to Brabrook's. Dowse was a strong proponent of mass production and in selling everything possible to as wide a market as possible.

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Posts: 414
Registered: Jun 2002

iconnumber posted 12-08-2003 12:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Marc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hi there June,

Thanks for the help.


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