Silver Service Hallmarks

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Silver Service Hallmarks

Postby MJDsMum » Sun Jan 11, 2009 6:56 pm

I was given this "Silver Service" as mum used to call it which was a wedding gift to great grandparents about 80+ years ago.
I've researched around this website and even emailed another but with no luck in identifying the marks. Any help would be greatly appreciated


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Postby MJDsMum » Fri Feb 27, 2009 6:18 am

Further to my posting these photos, I now believe that the hallmarks may actually be Barker Bros England.

I can now place the EP and NS but am still unable to place the A1 in the diamond shape. Any further help would be appreciated.

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Postby larkfield » Fri Feb 27, 2009 9:46 pm

I am curious as to why you believe that Hecworth could be Barker Bros.
The A1 is a quality symbol on electroplated items. there is also Super A1, and what it means I haven't a clue other than presumeably a manufacturers quality standard and ties in with their guarantee, We have some plated silver cutlery with Super A1 that has the DWTS (pennyweights) of silver deposited, but deposited over what? a full canteen of 12 of the item!

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Postby 2209patrick » Fri Feb 27, 2009 10:08 pm


Can't prove it, but I think Hecworth was a trademark used by an Australian firm.


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Postby MJDsMum » Sat Feb 28, 2009 2:21 am

In the second photo/posting, the EP and NS marks are virtually identical to some that were found by Barker Bros. I was also led to believe that birmingham may hold some significance to these. I know that they are at least 85 years old.
I can't find that Hecworth was Australian but thats not to say it wasn't.

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Postby admin » Sat Feb 28, 2009 11:47 am

Pat, your gut was right on target. ... ?irn=11693

scroll down to description, item nos. 3 & 4
3. Trade catalogue, "Hecworth Plate", fully illustrated, 64pp, Platers P/L, Collins Street, Melbourne, Victoria, c1933.

4. Trade catalogue, "Hecworth" Sheffield reproduction Silverware, fully illustrated, 14pp, Hecworth P/L, Greeves Street St Kilda, Victoria, c1946

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Postby MJDsMum » Sat Feb 28, 2009 5:53 pm

Thank you thank you thank you the only thing we knew for sure was that this service was around 90 years old and was a wedding gift....this is fantastic!!

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Postby new-b » Sat May 29, 2010 8:14 pm

Through the limited research I have done since I was given a silver tea service, I have been led to believe that E.P.N.S stands for electro plated nickel silver, while the A1, often seen in a diamond shape is a grading system. It includes A1 and A2 and is in reference to the thickness of the silver plating, eith 0.800 or 0.900 respectively.

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»Super A1«, »AI«, »A1« and »A2«

Postby silverport » Sun May 30, 2010 11:30 am

Hello new-b

Welcome, and thank you for your contribution.

Well it seems that you are a really »new-b«: Sorry there fore to must say this, your statement includes totally wrong conclusions!

Indications on American or British Plated hollowware and flatware by use of »Super A1« as »larkfield« reports, »AI« as in the question, or »A1« and »A2« as you report, are only factory statements of a kind of silver plating quality = weight of pure silver (normally of 999-1,000 fineness) is used for plating several amount of flatware surfaces obverse and reverse, or by hollowware: inside and outside.

In the American or British areas in the past two centuries, since about 1843 Electro Plating was start to be used instead of the former »Sheffield Plate« technique, hasn't existed any official rules of how much silver must be used on how much surface, and who should it be indicated!

As often it is, the only ruler was the »commerce«, »concurrency«, and the »market« itself as well.

Some producer, maybe after have dipped only a second time for some seconds the objects in the galvanic bath used the indication of to be: »DOUBLE PLATED« - others followed by »TRIPLE PLATE«, and »QUADRUPLE PLATE«.

Items of this past time COULD include the curiosity that a »DOUBLE PLATED« is of better plated quality as a »QUADRUPLE PLATE«.

So, as collector novice you must learn; and handle a lot of pieces — buy less, but buy quality.

The »Continental« or West European producer had similar wrestlings — after First World War e.g. the big German producer WMF and Wellner had on that theme their own expensive “war”, lasting for years.

Please look to and read these:

Now to your statement of: » is in reference to the thickness of the silver plating, eith 0.800 or 0.900 respectively. «

1. »thickness« never any body of the producers has warranted by indication numerals or letter-numeral! All indicated there with only a »kind of warranty«, to have used some pure silver by the electro plating processing.

Well, thickness stand in relation to the weight of material, by same dimension of surface = in Western Europe’s past it was used 90 gram on a quarter part of a square meter. Before World War II it became usual, to use 100 gram. Now it’s there normally used on better plated quality cutlery 150 gram.

2. As already mentioned, by the electro galvanic plating processing is placed on the »Anode« pure silver of normally 999-1,000 fineness.

Your stated 0.800 or 0.900 would result in so many problems; that these degraded finenesses never were used in a “normal” electro galvanic plating process.

Well, on the old »Sheffield Plate« production processing it was possible, using for the obverse of the basic copper plate several compositions of silver alloy — but that is another theme.

For final another curiosity: Most often cutlery, and seldom hollowware as well, made from silver alloy of fineness 800-1,000 upwards gets by some producers a final electro galvanic layer of silver with 999-1,000 fineness. Be made for better appearances of shining, and for the surfaces durability; by use of a very special galvanic technique, called »hard silver«.

Kind regards silverport

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