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Author Topic:   Need to identify tray with "S-M" and crown hallmark

Posts: 4
Registered: May 2008

iconnumber posted 05-16-2008 06:35 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for schlimme573     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

I found this tray, measuring 24 1/2"X11" with what appears to be silver plate over copper and would like some info on it. It has S then a crown, and M on the back with no other markings. Any ideas?

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Scott Martin
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Registered: Apr 93

iconnumber posted 05-16-2008 10:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Scott Martin     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Kimo says it best
Hi schlimme573 and welcome to the forum.

Could you please take a moment and re-read the forum guidelines for this forum at Guidelines and provide a bit more information as requested of first-time posters.

We are just a small group of people who like silver and as you will see when you read these instructions we ask new people to please introduce themselves by sharing a little information on their personal collecting interest in silver in general and why they are asking about the particular object in their posting.

Also, some clear photos are necessary. A link to instructions on the correct way to post photos in your posting are included in the guidelines. Photos both help us identify an object and they allow the people here to share in the appreciation of interesting silver and silver plated things.

Contributing Editor

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Posts: 4
Registered: May 2008

iconnumber posted 05-18-2008 04:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for schlimme573     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
First of all, I am unable to take a decent picture of the hallmark.
Second, my camera and computer can't make the file small enough to use your software.

To be perfectly honest, your constant referring new members to "jump through these hoops" is annoying. I have searched numerous links from this site and have had no luck with this particular piece. I have also taken it to two antique dealers, one of whom collects silver, and they too are unable to identify it.

I only signed up and posted this link to seek additional information from someone with experience.

If you all are unable to help, then do me a favor and not post.

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Posts: 971
Registered: Dec 2002

iconnumber posted 05-18-2008 05:11 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for dragonflywink     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hmmm, nice of you to order the kind gentleman who originated and maintains this very fine site to not post, and the lovely misplaced anger because you can't seem manage to do what others handle quite well - very nice! Personally, I'm not exactly inspired to offer any assistance (and will post anywhere I'd like, thank you).

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Posts: 4
Registered: May 2008

iconnumber posted 05-18-2008 05:23 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for schlimme573     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Jeezes, thanks for nothing.

As an antique car collector and restorer, I have become rather jaded to "know it alls" who offer misleading or otherwise worthless advice just to get noticed. I have very little time or patience for this kind of activity.

The information I was told to review specifically states pictures are not required. I gave a detailed description to the best of my abilities. If more information is needed, then please ask me and I'll do my best. I don't think posting pictures of the same tray that is already on this site will help due to the poor quality.

The hallmark is less than 1/4" by 3/8" and I cannot get my camera to capture an image that is viable. I even tried a magnifying glass but still nothing useful. This hallmark is in script with a very fine detailed 5-point crown with an outline. The "silver plate" is in capitals and is what I would call newspaper print. The "S" and "M" are old roman style.

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Posts: 1626
Registered: Nov 99

iconnumber posted 05-18-2008 06:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for bascall     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Originally posted by schlimme573:
I don't think posting pictures of the same tray that is already on this site will help due to the poor quality.

It is not my intention to be glib about your request, but if you will, please give me a little direction on how to find the tray that is like yours and already posted such as the name of the person initiating the thread or something else specific about the post that will save going through a very large number of postings to find the one you are referring to. Hopefully, you haven't already satisfactorily explained how to find it.

You will without question get the best possible advice on this site, and it nearly always works out to be a cooperative effort.

Unfortunately, your particular mark truly does not appear to be one of the more common ones, at least not to me. Good luck with your research however it works out.

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Posts: 2132
Registered: Nov 2002

iconnumber posted 05-18-2008 06:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Dale     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
With silverplate the mark is often about how the piece was sold not who made it. The mark you describe appears on hollowware from the 20's onwards. IMHE, identical pieces can be found with different marks. My impression is that these were made up to specifications from a wholesaler who thenmark them per instructions from his customers.

The lines available were in fairly generic design terms. Some were made to coordinate with china and crystal. Others were offered as premiums for sales efforts. Some also appear to have entered the trophy market. I've seen a lot of trays engraved as trophies. And even several complete tea sets. There are also tea sets given to churches and lodges engraved in memory of someone.

As for makers, this changed whenever a new batch was required. The most likely suspects are Rockford and Onieda. But International and some English companies also might have been involved.

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Posts: 1595
Registered: Mar 2003

iconnumber posted 05-19-2008 01:14 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kimo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hello schlimme573. As Scott mentioned, we are just a small group of folks who like to talk about our mutual interest in silver. We are very unlike most forums you run across on the web in that we are not an 'anything goes' kind of place where rudeness is the order of the day. Think of this place as visiting the house of our host and hostess for a pleasant afternoon tea where friends chat about our interest in silver and share our interest and knowledge. I am sure in your antique car collecting hobby that you would not take kindly to a stranger bursting into your home, not introducing himself, and then immediately start calling you names as they demanded you tell them how to find an elusive part to their old car without giving you enough information as to what part they were looking for.

There are very few rules here, but the few that exist are important. The first of them is we ask new people to please introduce themselves to the rest of us - this does not have to be onerous, simply say hello, provide a bit of information on your interest in silver in general, any information you already have on your object you are asking about such as how you acquired it, and say why you would like to know more about the particular object on which you are asking help.

A photo is very important for two good reasons - the first is there are so many similar markings on silver and silver plate that a verbal description alone will often be insufficient for any kind of reliable identification. There is no guarantee we will be able to identify what you have since many old markings have been lost to time especially silver plate ones, but if we can not identify it then it is unlikely anyone out there will be able to do so. The second very good reason for including photos goes back to the kind of forum this is - we are people who enjoy talking about silver and silver plated objects and an important part of this is to share with others. Clear photos accomplishes this in the best possible way - it allows everyone to share in seeing your object. It is a way that you can give to the group and make this a two-way sharing experience for everyone.

The directions on how to post photos are pretty clear and few people seem to have any trouble following them. If you are having trouble, please let us know what is not clear and we will try to help. For example, you say your digital camera does not take good closeups. Most digital cameras have something called a 'macro' setting and is usually indicated by a small flower shaped icon. This changes the focus to allow you to take very close up shots. Does your camera have this or can you borrow a camera that does?

The people at this forum are not the ones who normally post on other forums. In addition to the ordinary silver collectors here, many of the people here are the ones who write the silver reference books, curate the silver collections in museums, and generally have been collecting and studying silver for decades. Writing harsh words about the founding host and moderator of this forum (Scott) and everyone else here without first knowing us is not a method I recommend to receive help. The people here are genuinely kind and generous with their knowledge but your bullying and hectoring approach is not likely to entice them to be willing to share their knowledge.

I am sure we would all welcome you to become a regular here, but if so I think you would want to take a moment to reconsider your approach. Some people enjoy free for all brawls, trolling, baiting, giving out misinformation and the like and if that appeals to you then there are other forums where you can find that. This is not one of them.

[This message has been edited by Kimo (edited 05-19-2008).]

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iconnumber posted 05-19-2008 06:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for jersey     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
You took the words right out of my mouth! Thank you.


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Posts: 4
Registered: May 2008

iconnumber posted 05-19-2008 11:56 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for schlimme573     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
First of all, I apologize for my rudeness. I am a very blunt person and do offend a lot of people with my impatience. As a matter of fact, people have burst into my shop and proceeded to ruin sales or confused potential customers by pretending to be experts when they are dead wrong about what they are talking about.

I research a lot of information to be sure the parts I replace are original equipment and are correct for the car. This attention to detail can mean the difference of a $150,000 original and a $12,000 clone.

That being said, I appreciate the info and have already tried adjusting the camera settings and my camera evidently isn't set up right for the job. As far as posting pictures, I have posted over 1000 photos since going online with sales and have had no problems there.

As far as the hallmark and the possibility of being part of a set, there is an open space in the center that appears to have been left blank for an engraving. I will go back and research the photos I looked at last week and list the postings for reference.

Once again, I apologize for being blunt. I've gotten this way honestly by having to deal with idiots on a daily basis. I came here to find people that have a genuine knowledge of silver so I can determine the origin of this item which may lead to more interest in collecting.

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Posts: 1595
Registered: Mar 2003

iconnumber posted 05-20-2008 01:27 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kimo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you for your posting schlimme573. I am sure with your apology the people here will welcome you and we can start over. Communicating on the internet with just words can be fraught with misunderstanding.

Please let me start by introducing to you our host and hostess of this forum, Scott Martin and his lovely wife June. They are remarkable experts in their own rights in addition to being the forum's founders, owners, and chief moderators. We have some other moderators such as Dale who was a responder to your intial posting and contributing editors such as myself who try to keep the forum flowing and a pleasant place to spend a few moments learning about silver.

I think you will find the people on this forum to share your passion for getting things correct and they are to silver as you are to old autos. They really are the experts on silver and silver plate. As such they tend to shy away from the less pleasant forums where their expertise may not be appreciated or understood, and so they gravitate here.

Please give a try with the instructions on the how to post photos. Just do them step by step and if it does not work out just let us know where the sticking point may be and we will do our best to help you.

As I mentioned, I can not guarantee we will be able to help you since there are countless old silver plate markings and records on many of the makers and distributors were lost to time. The focus of many collectors over the centuries has tended to be more on solid silver objects and so the markings on these is better documented. Still, I think the ladies and gentlemen here have a remarkable track record of identifying obscure markings on silver plate. Sometimes it may take a while, though, since many of the people who frequent this forum only stop by every so often rather than daily. Like when you are looking for a specific original part for an old car, a bit of patience can pay off.

Contributing Editor

[This message has been edited by Kimo (edited 05-20-2008).]

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