Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

PHOTOS REQUIRED - marks + item
Granmaa
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Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

Postby Granmaa » Thu Apr 30, 2009 3:27 pm

Can someone help me identify this plain Old English spoon with three marks: W, anchor, ear of wheat.

Miles

Image Image
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MCB
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Postby MCB » Fri May 01, 2009 10:25 am

Hello Miles,

Both Jackson's page 597 and Richard Turner's Scottish Provincial Directory of Silversmiths Marks pages 58-9 suggest the "fouled" anchor mark tends to be for an item made in Dumfries. In view of the attribution in a very recent post to another of your spoons being from Dumfries have you come across a job lot!

Not that it helps to identify the spoon's origin but I'm not sure the third mark is a wheat ear. Wheat ears in my reference books aren't similar to the one here.

Sorry but I can't help with the maker's mark.

Regards,
Mike
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Granmaa
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Postby Granmaa » Fri May 01, 2009 11:16 am

Hi Mike.

The John Leslie spoon was bought seperately. I did find the two anchor spoons together in the same shop along with a Dundee spoon.

The "ear of wheat" mark strikes me as odd. It seems much deeper than the other marks.

Miels
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dognose
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Postby dognose » Fri May 01, 2009 1:08 pm

Hi Miles and Mike,

I discounted Dumfries, purely on the grounds that I could not find a smith with a 'W' initial, of course that's not to say that one did not exist as one may come to light yet.

I was wondering about the possibility of Peterhead, were William Smith and William S. Ferguson both worked there. William Smith was known to have used the 'fouled anchor' mark. But to me, I feel the 'W' is more likely, due to the placement of the marks, to be that of the surname, maybe.

I also wonder, I know nothing of the history of Peterhead with the exception that it is a small port, if it was ever host to a Royal Navy presence, as my thoughts regarding the other mark is that it strongly resembles a government broad arrow, just the sort of mark that would have been struck on mess silver. It would certainly appear that this mark was made by a different hand and I suspect that it was struck after it had left the shop of 'W'.

Regards Trev.
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Postby MCB » Sat May 02, 2009 7:54 am

Hello Miles & Trev,

Reading page 616 of Jackson's on Peterhead I notice it says "like other such ports an anchor is sometimes found as a silvermark". The design is perhaps more widespread than first thought and makes attribution of a town for the fouled anchor on the spoon even more difficult.

The possibility of the third mark being a government broad arrow is interesting. It does look to have been struck separately. It would mean though that the mark isn't indicative of a particular maker and the spoon could have been originally bought from anywhere.

Sadly it seems attribution of a place and maker for the item may escape us.

Regards,
Mike
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2209patrick
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Postby 2209patrick » Sat May 02, 2009 5:02 pm

Hello everyone.

Not sure about this, just wanted to offer an idea.
Your marks remind me of some Indian Colonial silver marks that I have seen.
In the picture below the mark on the far right is called a tally mark in my reference.

Image

Pat.
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Granmaa
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Postby Granmaa » Sat May 02, 2009 6:00 pm

Amazing similarities. I have owned very few colonial and very few Scottish provincial spoons, but I would still go with Scottish origin based on the style of the spoon and the engraving.

Miles
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Scotprov
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anchor mark

Postby Scotprov » Mon May 04, 2009 8:20 am

Hello Miles,

definitely not Dumfries - the fouling rope is going the wrong way for Dumfries (and Twentyman of Calcutta, Hunt had no fouling). The high loop should be on the left, here it is on the right.
Greenock has no fouling rope and the rope is wrong for Peterhead, as is the W (the Peterhead smith being William Sellar or Simpson.)
Sorry to be only able to dismiss sources. My very tentative suggestion would be South Africa, but I have no books for the marks there.
Richard
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Re: anchor mark

Postby dognose » Mon May 04, 2009 8:55 am

Hi Richard,

Good to hear from you, you've been away too long.

Scotprov wrote: as is the W (the Peterhead smith being William Sellar or Simpson.)


Is there fresh information on the silversmiths working in Peterhead? William S. Ferguson and William Smith are the names quoted in your book, as the only 'W's working in Peterhead. Or is this the case of William Simpson moving, as so many of them did, to where the work was, in this example, from Banff to Peterhead?

Regards Trev.
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Postby MCB » Mon May 04, 2009 2:06 pm

Hello Richard,

Thanks for your comments on the direction the Dumfries anchor is fouled. Both my reference books are duly noted. The rope loop on the spoon mark, allowing for the wear, does however appear to me very like several of those published for the town.

Am I correct in thinking please that apart from Greenock and Peterhead you are saying there's no evidence, contrary to Jackson's, that other Scottish ports silversmiths used the fouled anchor mark and therefore the spoon must be from elsewhere?

Mike
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Scotprov
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anchor mark

Postby Scotprov » Fri May 08, 2009 2:48 pm

Hello all,
There's Paisley, of course, but they have the wrong anchor, again for this.
I did see one piece catalogued for Dundee, Edward Livingstone, a long time ago. Not having seen the actual item or a photo, there is a possibility that it was really a mistruck thistle that they were looking at.

Richard
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Scotprov
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Peterhead

Postby Scotprov » Fri May 08, 2009 3:17 pm

Trev,
The only Peterhead smith that I have heard of since my book came out was a spoon with a miss-struck maker's mark of P? on either side of a PHD, with the D small. c1820 was the dating.
The Peterhead WS of William Smith is different to all the WS punches of William Simpson of Banff, so the probability is that it was not the same smith (excuse the pun).
There were so many apprentices and smiths in Aberdeen, that it is difficult to keep track of their marks and where they went, several going to India of course.
Colin Fraser, of L&T, has so far identified over 500 silverworkers in Aberdeen alone, over the centuries, many of whose marks are unknown, if they ever got to having their own punches
Richard
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Postby dognose » Fri May 08, 2009 4:50 pm

Hi Richard,

Thanks for posting the information.

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but do you not think that too much emphasis is placed on the details that appear on Scottish provincial town marks. These were not official marks, and presumably each smith had his own punch made up and variations would occur depending on the interpretation of the maker or makers of these punches. The same must also apply to the maker's marks, the fact that they were not registered would surely mean that when a replacement punch was required, there was no real need for an exact replica to be made.

Regards Trev.
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Scotprov
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Postby Scotprov » Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:04 am

Hello Trev,

That is true, some of them made their punches using a steel nail, which explains why they were so rough. Most were made to excellent specs.
The problem is that there should be several spoons around with the same punch being used, and this is the only example with any of these marks.

Richard
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Granmaa
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Postby Granmaa » Sun Nov 08, 2009 10:31 am

I found this while revisiting some old threads. The anchor and "arrow" mark are possibly the same. Interestingly, it suggests the "arrow" mark was made with two punches.

Miles

viewtopic.php?t=14757
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Granmaa
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Re: Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

Postby Granmaa » Thu Apr 07, 2011 10:51 am

I've come across another example of this mark but with a different maker: either MC or MG.

Miles

Image

grianaig
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Re: Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

Postby grianaig » Sat Apr 06, 2013 9:39 am

I have three toddy ladles with the marks MC fouled anchor W. The first two are very similar to those shown on the second example by granmaa. I too would like an attribution. I would post an image but do not see (or have no permission) how to do this

oel
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Re: Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

Postby oel » Sat Apr 06, 2013 10:56 am

Hi Grainaig, welcome to the forum.


This should help to do the trick:
How to Add Images
Posting Requirements
http://www.tinypic.com" is recommended. Resize 15"Screen (800x600)
Please check quality of image by using preview button before submit.
Embedded images are getting a far better response

Oel.

grianaig
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Re: Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

Postby grianaig » Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:27 am

OK, here are the marks for my toddy ladle............http://i48.tinypic.com/2emixbl.jpg

(admin photo edit - remember to use the preview button)

dognose
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Re: Scot Prov Spoon; Anchor Mark

Postby dognose » Sun Apr 07, 2013 10:12 am

Hi,

Welcome to the Forum.

Richard Turner in his 'A Directory of Scottish Provincial Silversmiths & Their Marks' has MC, anchor, W, attributed to an unknown Greenock maker c.1840. Jackson's also has note of the same markings.

Trev.


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