Online Encyclopedia of Silver Marks, Hallmarks & Makers' Marks
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Harry Spurr Whitbeck

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Harry S. Whitbeck was an American silversmith and goldsmith. He is listed in the National Directory of Workers in the Artistic Crafts 1906 - 1907 and the American Art Directory, Craftsmen Section 1912. In 1906 he wrote an article entitled "The Making of a Silver Spoon" that was published in Keramic Studio Magazine in January 1906 and reprinted in Silver Magazine in March 1976. They following information was provided by his daughter, Carolyn.
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photo: courtesy of the Whitbeck Family
Harry Spurr Whitbeck was born July 14, 1880 in Northampton, Mass. After graduation from Northampton High School he attended Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY., where he learned to make fine jewelry. He gained the skills of both a silversmith and a goldsmith. For a few years he taught metal arts at McKinley High School in Washington, D.C. There he met an English teacher and they were married in 1913 in Worcester, Mass. They had four children.

In 1917 Harry was employed at Tiffany on 5th Avenue in New York, where he worked for 16 years. He worked in a shop on the 6th floor of the store where he made and repaired one-of-a-kind pieces of fine jewelry. During the great depression Tiffany was forced to downsize the staff and Harry was among those to become unemployed.

Harry always had a well-equipped shop in his home and continued to make and repair fine jewelry. He fashioned toys for his children and carved elaborate block prints. He made beautiful wooden trays with Chinese tapestries under glass. In 1936, Harry and his wife moved to Northampton, where they lived for the rest of their lives. Harry died in December, 1947.

The above is written by Harry's daughter, Carolyn S. (Whitbeck) b. 1918

Handwrought sterling ladle, ca. 1905

photo: J. Dawson
Cast sterling brooch

Many thanks to the Whitbeck and Dawson families for the information and photos provided.

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