Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

PHOTOS REQUIRED - marks + item
ljmmuk
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Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:15 pm

I know this is Chester silver but am having trouble identifying the hallmarks.
There is a mark on the right which at first looks like N on its own but there seems to be another letter beside it. An I perhaps?

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Any help would be appreciated.

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:37 pm

Hi,

Welcome to the Forum.

That's a wonderful piece, a Tipstaff, see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tipstaff

It appears to have been assayed at Chester in 1814, that would fit in very nicely with the work of Nicholson Lee, of 34, Ray Street, Liverpool. Nicholson Lee was a known maker of tipstaffs.

Trev.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:45 pm

Trev,

Thanks for your prompt reply, I am very surprised that it was made in 1814 as there is an inscription on it dated 1836. This is what sent me on the wrong track I think! Do you think that it would have been engraved in Liverpool or in Chester? I am trying to find out about the Boroughreeve and 2 constables who are named on the inscription.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Sun Sep 16, 2012 12:49 pm

Hello again Trev

I forgot to ask if you can tell me what the mark in the middle is? Looks like a head.

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Sun Sep 16, 2012 1:04 pm

Ah, that's interesting, for the 'S' date letter, with larger serifs, was also used in 1836, so that is much more likely to be the correct date.

As to whether Lee was still working at that time, I'm unsure, perhaps another member has some knowledge of him. The engraving would have been nothing to do with the assay office, so if the maker was Liverpool based, then it's likely to have been done there, either by the silversmith himself, or by a specialist engraver.

The 'head' mark is the Duty mark, it was applied at the assay office along with the other hallmarks after the Duty had been received from whoever submitted the silver for assay.

See Duty mark at: http://www.925-1000.com/silverglossary2.html

Trev.

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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby silverly » Sun Sep 16, 2012 1:24 pm

Should there be any connection, there's a Nicholson Lee listed as a watch case maker on Scotland Road in the The Poll for the Election of Members of Parliament for The Borough of Liverpool, 1832. http://books.google.com/books?id=bMQHAA ... 22&f=false

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Sun Sep 16, 2012 1:53 pm

Yep, that's the same guy, noted as being located at 143, Scotland Road after 1823 as a Watchcase Maker and Goldsmith.

Trev.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Sun Sep 16, 2012 2:07 pm

silverly and Trev

Many thanks, I will concentrate my search on Liverpool! I had just discovered that Ray Street was part of Scotland Street from a geneological website. I may uncover the mystery of the tipstaff after all. If I do, I will let you know.

Linda

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Sun Sep 16, 2012 5:32 pm

Trev,

You might be right about the 1814 date, I have looked at the duty mark with an illuminated 15x magnifier and it is much more like George III than William IV. The head is tipped back and he has long hair and the same collar. Is it possible that they engraved it 22 years after it was made?

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:04 am

Hi Linda,

Although George IV had long departed, it is thought likely that the Duty mark with his head shown was used as late as 1836 by the Chester Assay Office. Also, it is around this period that we see the disappearance of the Leopards Head that was also to be found on Chester silver, and as such a piece as a tipstaff is likely to have been made to order, then the date of 1836 would appear to be correct.

Whilst I still believe Lee is the likely maker of the piece, one thing to bear in mind is the possibility of the 'N' being the initial of the surname rather than that of the forename. The silversmith is required to strike his mark prior to the submission for assay, and has no way of knowing which way up the assay office will strike the hallmarks, so on occasion the maker's mark has the appearance of being upside down, and as the letter 'N' appears the same when viewed from both directions, it's as well to leave the door slightly ajar on this one.

Can you show an image of the engraving?

Trev.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:28 am

Hi Trev

4 photos of the engraving.

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Image
Image

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Tue Sep 18, 2012 2:36 am

Hi Linda,

Thanks for the images. Can you print out the content of the engraving?

Trev.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Tue Sep 18, 2012 7:30 am

Jas Mangnall Esq Boroughreeve
Wm Haslam Robt Knowles Constables
1836

Have now found among my mother's belongings (she passed away in July), a catalogue for Sotheby's Exhibition at The Grosvenor Museum in Chester in July / August 1984 featuring the tipstaff (they call it a stave).

They suggest that it is probably stamped by Thomas Newton who was in partnership with a Mr Hyde. When the partnership was dissolved Newton used his stamp with the H blanked out. He was based in Manchester and sent items to the assay office in Chester in his own name from 1828 to 1845. They do mention Nicholas Lee but dismiss him as he is listed as a watchcase maker at the time.
I think I am now even more confused but will concentrate my search on Manchester and Liverpool.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Tue Sep 18, 2012 7:36 am

Arrrgghh!!

Have now found a receipt from Sotheby's inside the catalogue dated March 1984 and the description is "Tipstaff by Nicholas Lee of Manchester 1836"

They must have done some more research between then and publishing the catalogue.

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Tue Sep 18, 2012 11:55 am

Hi Linda,

There has been a lot more research since the auction and the exhibition. To my knowledge, and the records are far more comprehensive today, there was no Nicholas Lee registered with the Chester Assay Office, this is possibly a transcription error and as the dates in the Chester Duty book tie up with those quoted of the submissions of Nicholson Lee, I am sure we must be talking about one of the same person, but read Liverpool for Manchester.

Besides Watchcases, Nicholson Lee submitted Gold rings, snuff boxes and tipstaffs at Chester.

As for the Newton & Hyde connection, I've taken a look at the exhibition catalogue, and unless they knew something that they didn't mention in the write up, then surely they should have used the word 'possibly' rather than 'probably'. Ridgway and Pristley's 'The Compendium of Chester Gold & Silver Marks' shows only gold rings for Newton & Hyde's submissions.

However, there could still be a Manchester connection, I note that they used to appoint a Boroughreeve and two Constables at a time.

Trev.

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Tue Sep 18, 2012 6:14 pm

The tipstaff has been in my family for at least 50 years and I am researching my family tree. I cannot find any of the 3 names but would love to know where to look next. Do you know of any police records for Manchester I could look at? there seems to be a wealth of information about the metropoliton police but I have drawn a blank looking outside of them.

Regards Linda

MCB
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby MCB » Wed Sep 26, 2012 11:42 am

Hello Linda

Try http://gmpmuseum.com for the Greater Manchester Police Museum. Historical records of deceased serving officers may be there.
Good luck.

Mike

ljmmuk
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby ljmmuk » Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:41 pm

Mike, Many thanks, will give this a try.

Linda

dognose
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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby dognose » Thu Sep 27, 2012 3:50 am

Hi Linda,

Your images have disappeared. It is important for the benefit of others that images remain in place for as long as possible as information placed on the forum is intended to be a long term reference to be shared with other members.

Can you replace the images?

Trev.

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Re: Ceremonial truncheon cannot identify marks

Postby Granmaa » Wed Oct 24, 2012 7:51 pm

Great object.

I found this little snippet in The Blackburn Standard 19th October 1836:
Little Bolton Court Leet - On Friday at the Court of Leet of Thomas Tipping Esq, Lord of the Manor of Little Bolton, held at the Town Hall, in Little Bolton, the following officers were elected for the ensuing year: James Magnall, Esq boroughreeve, Robert Knowles and William Haslam (Park Hill Place) Esqrs, constables.

Miles


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