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Author Topic:   Need Help Identifying Silver

Posts: 3
Registered: Mar 2001

iconnumber posted 03-09-2001 08:34 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gjr383     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have looked for weeks for information about a silver flatware set I inherited, which is missing the knives and salad forks.

8 - Small spoons - 4 1/2"
7 - Teaspoons - 5 3/4"
8 - Tablespoons - 8 1/4"
8 - Forks - 8 1/4"
Ladle - 11 3/4"
Serving Fork - 9 "

I have tried to research this pattern unsuccessfully. They may be what is known as "silver plate" or "coin silver" but that is only a guess. Can you furnish me with any information about where to find the missing items in this set or direct me to someone who can?

The silver bears two marks and the name that looks like "ALFREDO ALVAREZ" OR "ALVARE7" stamped on the backside. "ALFREDO" is very faint and may not be correct. One of the marks is in the shape of a star and the other appears to be a chalice similar to that shown here.

With sincere appreciation for whatever info or direction you can give me.

Gwen Rogers

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Scott Martin
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Posts: 11377
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 03-09-2001 10:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Very nice looking silver set.
You say the set is either coin silver or silver plate? Please have it checked out by a local silver professional and let us know whether it is solid silver or not.
Do you or another family member know when and where this set might have been purchased? It doesn't look American.
Some of the marks look familiar but they are difficult to completely resolve. Is there any chance you could get us a better photo? I tried enhancing your image ....

The Alvarez mark is clear but I don't see the Alfredo mark. Where is the Alfredo mark? BTW, the Alvarez mark could be the retailer's mark and not the a maker's mark. Until there is a clearer photo I would guess that other marks are standard or assayer marks. Maybe someone with better eyesight will know. To me, if you turn the mark described as a "chalice" upside down it may look more like a crown. What do you think?

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Posts: 3
Registered: Mar 2001

iconnumber posted 03-09-2001 02:58 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for gjr383     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dear Scott:
I do not know what kind of silver the flatware set is and was only repeating what someone (not a professional) told me it could be.

The set could have been purchased in South America as that is where my aunt and uncle lived for many years. The name Alvarez also sounds Spanish, doesn't it?
Here are some new pictures that show the marks a little better:

Thanks so much for your response.

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Scott Martin
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Posts: 11377
Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 03-14-2001 07:21 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I contacted a few South American silversmiths and auction houses about this interesting post. So far, the auction house J. C. Naon & Ca. S.A. has replied:

Dear Mr. Martin,

Thanks for your interest in our Auction house and website. I've checked the images you sent and if your request refers to the A. Alvarez piece, it seems not to be from South America; on the contrary, in my opinion it rather looks like a Spanish or Portuguese one -period: end of XVIII century or beginning of century XIX.-. Unfortunately we have no corresponding bibliography to recommend upon this as I do not recognize this hallmark at all.

I do hope to be of any further service on another occasion.

Juan Carlos Ocampo
J. C. Naon & Ca. S.A.
Buenos Aires

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Posts: 14
Registered: Feb 2001

iconnumber posted 03-14-2001 02:45 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Willie     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dear Gwen,

Here is a possibility, and only that.
Tardy shows a five pointed star which seems to be a Spanish standard mark. I am unclear as to what fineness it represents, but it may be .915. It would appear however to be a post 1934 mark. For the same time period the makers mark should be enclosed in a hexagonal punch.

Best Regards, Willie

Tardy - "International Hallmarks on Silver"
1985 English edition, pp 109

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Posts: 3
Registered: Mar 2001

iconnumber posted 03-14-2001 03:30 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for gjr383     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thanks for all your help. Scott, I was about to despair until I got your last post. I have a pair of silver birds that have a hexagonal stamp and a star like what you mention in your post, Willie. Could you look at the marks on them and see if they are the ones you are referring to?

I think they were purchased in South America perhaps around the same time as the flatware.

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