Vesta Case

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paulh
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Vesta Case

Postby paulh » Sat Jun 15, 2013 12:41 pm

This is a nice little vesta case which seems to be from the early 20th century. Where I would expect to see a Birmingham hall mark there is something puzzling. It seems to say N.C.R. C??? possibly ‘Co’ and on the other side something with four letters then ‘silver’.

I have put it in the American section, but that is just speculation. Does anyone have any suggestion?

Paul.

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MCB
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Re: Vesta Case

Postby MCB » Sat Jun 15, 2013 12:49 pm

Hello Paul

It is a possibility the mark NCR & Co could relate to N C Reading and Co who registered at both Birmingham and Chester AO.

Regards,
Mike

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Re: Vesta Case

Postby dragonflywink » Sat Jun 15, 2013 2:18 pm

Have seen your mark several times over the years on small late 19th-early 20th century items like watch chains and charms, match safes, etc. - still don't know who the maker is, but it's a white metal alloy called 'Albo Silver' (can be read in your pic). Used to think it was most likely a British manufacturer, but seem to recall running across indication that Australian was more likely - let me take a quick look through some files to see if I can track that down...

~Cheryl

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Re: Vesta Case

Postby dragonflywink » Sat Jun 15, 2013 3:12 pm

Heh - so much for my memory, found my notes, with some bits from both Australia and New Zealand, but also noted reference to N.C. Reading & Co. watch chains and charms (donated by the company) at the British Museum, with this citation: "J. Rudoe, Jewellery Studies Vol. 3, 1989, pp.49-72. Albo Regd was registered in 1885. The substrate is 7-11% nickel, 20-24% zinc, the balance being copper. Albo Silver was registered in 1886 and consists of a thick plating of silver over the substrate of 15-19% nickel, 19-23% zinc, the balance being copper."

British Museum - Albo Silver

~Cheryl

dragonflywink
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Re: Vesta Case

Postby dragonflywink » Sat Jun 15, 2013 4:10 pm

Australian import regulations concerning 'imitation silver', from a 1921 American exporters' guide, reads almost like 'albo silver' had become a generic term:

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1900 ad from New Zealand for 'Albo silver' match boxes:

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1915 ad from New Zealand for 'Albo Silver' jewelry:

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~Cheryl

dognose
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Re: Vesta Case

Postby dognose » Fri Jul 05, 2013 6:57 am

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N.C.Reading & Co. - Birmingham - 1888


The white alloy registered as " Albo Silver, " the excellent chains manufactured from which we noticed at the time of its introduction into the market, is now being extensively made up into various other articles of jewellery, such as ladies' and gentlemen's chains, lockets, seals, bracelets, &c., which are in great demand throughout the trade. The estimate we at first formed of the new material has been fully confirmed by practical experience, and the further extension of its uses should be practically unlimited. The articles of jewellery at present made up have each the registered "Albo Silver" label attached and are stamped with the initials of the manufacturers, N. C. R. Co. They can be obtained from all wholesale houses.

Source: The Watchmaker, Jeweller and Silversmith - 1st June 1888

The demand which has arisen during the last few years for chains manufactured of white metal has led to the markets being inundated with many meretricious productions. Without wishing to disparage the manufactures of several well-known houses, which are excellent in their way, we must admit that 'Albo Silver' is a metal, which, by reason of its pure whiteness and freedom from any leaden or brassy tints, holds the foremost position among white metals. The estimate which we have formed of Albo Silver we may say has been arrived at after a very careful examination of the metal in all its stages. In the strip it is seen at a glance that the colour is that of a very desirable hue, which hitherto it has been found impossible to obtain, i.e., a pearly white. 'Albo Silver' is made up into various articles of jewellery, such as ladies' and gent's chains, seals, lockets, bracelets, &c. Every article bears a registered parchment label, and all swivels are marked N.C.R.Co. We can safely recommend our country and colonial friends to order through their factor goods bearing these marks and labels.

Source: The Jeweller and Metalworker - 1888

Trev.

paulh
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Re: Vesta Case

Postby paulh » Fri Jul 05, 2013 6:02 pm

Thanks so much Trev. Another piece of obscure ephemera. Not sure just where you find all this stuff!

Paul.


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