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Author Topic:   maker query - horsehead
tag

Posts: 8
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 11-19-1999 01:42 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for tag     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
[19-0027]


I've turned up a few pieces by this maker, all with similar engraving. Some are with retailer's stamps as far afield as Philadelphia and Chicago. The mark is illus. in Cutten's Silversmiths of North Carolina as possibly a mark of Brown & Anderson of Wilmington NC. I think B&A was just acting as another retailer for this maker. It doesn't seem likely that a small NC firm was manufacturing on a scale large enough to be supplying a geographically diverse group of retailers. Any info or thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks


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Brent

Posts: 1502
Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 11-22-1999 09:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The horse & chevron mark has been fairly conclusively linked to James Watts of Philadelphia. The attribution was first made in Silver magazine (May/June 1988) by V. Stephen Vaughan, and elaborated upon by Don Soeffing in the September/October issue of that year. Research has shown Watts in business in a variety of partnerships from 1832 to at least 1887. Watts primarily supplied other retailers, although his name appears in script on some pieces, implying that he did sell some silver under his own name. Don Soeffing mentions a cased set of horse & chevron spoons bearing a ribbon with Watts' name.

Watts was indeed an "exporter", sending flatware of his manufacture to retailers throughout the US. In fact, I have a spoon of the same design as yours with the retailers mark of Chas. Wendell of Chicago.

As far as I know, Watts only produced flatware. I have seen one large soup ladle, but mostly just run-of-the-mill flatware. All of his patterns that I have seen were of the engraved variety.

Interestingly, in Vaughan's article he tried to attribute George Sharp's Lion S Lion mark to Watts also! There are a few examples of flatware in existence that bear the horse & chevron mark as well as the Lion S Lion. Don Soeffing believes, and I concur, that these represent flatware blanks produced by Sharp and acquired by Watts when Sharp went out of business in 1874. I am fortunate enough to have one of these rarities, as did Mr. Vaughan.

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Trefid

Posts: 85
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 12-20-1999 12:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Trefid     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thought you might like to know that the James Watts mark appears on these two die-stamped patterns, as well.
For my own catalogue, I call them "LEAF" and "CALLA LILY LEAF."

I'm interested to know if anyone can identify a similar mark: [animal head] over [shield with star]. I've several pieces of this maker's mark, most with very "Philadelphia-style" engraving. I'm therefore guessing that it's a Philadelphia maker, possibly related either familially or professionally to James Watts. The unknown maker also has a quasi-leaf die-stamped pattern.

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Bob Schulhof

Posts: 194
Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 12-21-1999 01:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Bob Schulhof     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Animal Head mark referred to above:

Also the engraved pieces :

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Brent

Posts: 1502
Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 02-06-2000 10:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I just saw another piece with the marks of both Watts and George Sharp. It was an engraved pattern again, but it was also a large punch ladle with a beautifully engraved bowl.

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M H Bradshaw

Posts: 32
Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 02-10-2000 05:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for M H Bradshaw     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here is another example of a coin piece marked with the animal head over a shield with a star.

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WGS

Posts: 136
Registered: Oct 99

iconnumber posted 02-12-2000 02:31 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for WGS     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for the information about James Watts. I had "horse over chevron" in my file, and now I have the name of the maker. I inherited a coin fiddle style teaspoon with "horse over chevron" from my sister who died last year in Raleigh, NC. I have no idea where she got the spoon. She was mostly a collector of strawberry forks and figural napkin holders.

------------------

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Brent

Posts: 1502
Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 10-21-2000 09:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Trefid sends along this mark, similar to Watts' but also different. It is on a "Bead
"-type pattern berry spoon with a gold-washed bowl. It appears to be a "lion's head erased" over a shield, and almost looks engraved, rather thyan just stamped. Could this be of Britannia standard, as signified by the Lion's head erased? We know some New York manufacturers used a 950 standard for a brief period; perhaps this is a Philadelphia example? This is just conjecture, of course. Has anyone else seen an example of this mark?

Brent

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Scott Martin
Forum Master

Posts: 11392
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 10-22-2000 01:08 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The "head over chevron" marks have always been a bit of a mystery to me. I realize that there is a fair amount of support that the mark has relations to Watts. But I am not completely convinced. I have seen several variations on the mark (nothing like the example provided by Trefid). Could it be that these are the normal variations that result as dies are remade or could there have been more than one maker using similar marks? Or maybe it was the same wandering craftsman hiring out to different silversmith/watchmaker shops?

This weekend we got a copy of The Silversmiths of North Carolina by the State Department of Archives and History. On page 35 the mark is shown associated with Brown & Anderson.

quote:
Brown & Anderson (_____- 1871). Thomas William Brown and William S, Anderson, in Wilmington. The partnership began about 1850 and was terminated by the death of Anderson, June 16, 1871.

The head in mark provided by Trefid looks more like a griffin than a horse or lion.

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Brent

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Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 11-22-2000 11:44 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Trefid sends along a picture of the piece with the engraved mark. The pattern is close to Albert Coles' Mayflower, but not quite the same.

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wev
Moderator

Posts: 4095
Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 03-04-2002 10:10 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for wev     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Now here is a combinaton I didn't expect to see -- the cheveron/horse head mark as shown in Bob's post on a coffin spoon with retailer marks for HAAS & Co. Any ideas when this was made? A replacement piece, perhaps?

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t-man-nc

Posts: 327
Registered: Mar 2000

iconnumber posted 03-17-2002 07:27 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for t-man-nc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I picked up two forks in the "Leaf" or Cala Leaf" this weekend, and have cleaned the majority of dirt from them. The Horse Head is a bit strange in that the mouth is very tiny, but closely resembles the marks first posted by "TAG". I will be going by the NC State offices to get their opinion as to whether they think it is Watts or B&A... I will update later...

Ken and Lisa

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Trefid

Posts: 85
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 03-23-2002 12:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Trefid     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
[gone from the internet - members.aol.com/maccrisken/CallaLilyLeaf.jpg]

Your forks are definitely by James Watts, as can be seen by the above image. So far I've only found 3 die-struck Watts patterns--4 if you believe that the odd mark on that MAYFLOWER-like pattern is his. Besides CALLA LILY LEAF, Watts made a LEAF pattern similar to that of A. Coles, and an embossed SHELL pattern.

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wev
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Registered: Apr 99

iconnumber posted 09-06-2002 06:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for wev     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Couldn't resist posting up this extravagant (grotesque?) scoop with our mystery griffin/horse over chevron mark. It measures 9 1/2" and weights in at 70 gr.

It is currently running on ebay, item 905208005

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Marc

Posts: 414
Registered: Jun 2002

iconnumber posted 09-12-2002 01:28 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Marc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hi there Scott et al,

I once believed that the Horse head and cheveron mark was Brown and Anderson's mark, but you have to realize that the photo in the NC book dates from 1948, and though it has been updated a few times, heaven forbid that
that the change be made. Ms. Peacock in her 1984 (latest edition) update, left the photo in the book!

The Brown and Anderson mark is also associated with several other northern makers marks including Thomas Edwards and William Gale and son, so it is really safe to say that like 99% of the other Brown & Anderson pieces we see, they were all made elsewhere.
It happens when you are on the coast.. Much faster transportation by sea, and also, North Carolina mad silver tends toward the rather plain side..


Marc Cutcher
Greensboro North Carolina

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Brent

Posts: 1502
Registered: May 99

iconnumber posted 10-10-2002 12:18 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Brent     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Trefid sends us this.........

Watts/Butler Marks
Seeing the development of the "Maker Query - Horsehead" thread led me to gather all my Watts marks together, together with the "animal head over shield with star" marks, which I believe to be either J.P. Butler or Butler & McCarty. At one time Watts had a partnership with "Butler" but I have yet to learn which individual that was.

The first name of the Butler of Butler & McCarty has been identified as "Franklin" in more than one source. Note the similarity between the two marks pointed at by arrows. The top part of both of these marks bears a resemblance to the "lion's head erased" of the British Britannia standard, not that I'm suggesting any other standard but coin for Watts and Butler. Given the variation in these marks, I don't think we can refer to Watts' mark as simply "horse head over chevron" anymore.

Trefid

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Scott Martin
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Posts: 11392
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 07-06-2008 01:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

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swarter
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Posts: 2920
Registered: May 2003

iconnumber posted 07-06-2008 01:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for swarter     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The S flanked by facing lions is the trademark of George B. Sharp, a manufacturing silversmith. McGrew records a spoon bearing this mark and that of Watts as a retailer.

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Scott Martin
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iconnumber posted 07-06-2008 02:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I believe you are correct that Watts retailed this. It was interesting that Watts added his maker's mark.

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swarter
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iconnumber posted 07-06-2008 06:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for swarter     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I suppose Watts could have added or embellished engraving on the blade. One would have to have access to a Seymour trade catalog to see what he offered.

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bascall

Posts: 1626
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 01-24-2009 01:20 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for bascall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by wev:
Now here is a combinaton I didn't expect to see -- the cheveron/horse head mark as shown in Bob's post on a coffin
spoon with retailer marks for HAAS & Co. Any ideas when this was made? A replacement piece, perhaps?

In the 1850 and 1860 U S Federal Census for Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Joseph A Haas appears with Thomas J Megear. In 1850 he is a watchmaker,and in 1860, he is a watch dealer.

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doc

Posts: 712
Registered: Jul 2003

iconnumber posted 11-16-2014 04:29 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for doc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have seen the animal mark over crest with star, shown in Bob and wev's postings, as being attributed to the Philadelphia silversmiths Butler & McCarty. I have a ladle with this mark, with a retailer's mark of Charles Stakeman from Trenton NJ.

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Trefid

Posts: 85
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 12-09-2014 02:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Trefid     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The "animal head over shield with star" mark has been attributed by Catherine Hollon in her Philadelphia Silversmiths book to James P. Butler, and I agree with her. As far as I know, Butler made only one die-struck pattern, which I call "LEAF & DART", but his mark is on numerous different blanks, and with different engraving.

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Trefid

Posts: 85
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 08-06-2020 12:08 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Trefid     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

This is what "LEAF & DART" by James P. Butler looks like (now that I've FINALLY figured out how to post pix).

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