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Silver Collector Forums

Chester Silver Hallmark

Hi All.
I found a small dessert fork the other day. It has a Chester hallmark but when I looked up the date code I was confused.

The date mark is an italic J in a square backgound with bevelled corners. Looking at the date chart this looks to be 1734. However, the makers mark is for the Barker Brothers who date from the early 20th century. There is a date mark of an italic J for 1909 but the background for the 1909 date letter is different.

When I compare the forms of the italic J it matches the earlier date code better.

Can anyone suggest an explanation or confirm the date code for me?

Photo of the hallmark is … hesterFork

Thanks for any and all suggestions.


The picture doesn’t load I’m afraid.

Hi. Thanks for your reply. On my browser the picasa link works OK.
Have you tried clickinh on the link or pasting into the browser?
Thanks, David

Still can’t see your picture, although I can see lots of your other pictures by removing “ChesterFork” from the url.

The series of Chester date letters from 1901 to 1925, and indeed the following series through to 1950, did not all use the same shaped punch. Both the shape you describe (square with bevelled corners) and the shape which is normally illustrated in references (top half square with bevelled corners, bottom half like a curly parenthesis on its side) were used, so your Barker Bros fork does indeed date from 1909. Note that the town mark is completely different in the earlier, 18th century, series.

Perfect. Explains everything. Thank you vey much.