Please visit our other websites: Ganoksin Jewelry Making Resource | Orchid Jewelry Making Forums | International Gem Society | IGS Gemstone and Gemology Forums

Silver Collector Forums

Nice Little Bowl..Gorham?

Hello: i’m new to this board so hopefully my description will not waste your time without a picture(which i am still trying to figure out).
Thanks to your board and some research, i have a small bowl 1 1/4" tall and about 2 5/8" (the bowl diameter). So far i have come up with, Perhaps Gorham…It has the Lion and Anchor marks and the Sickle(sp) for i believe 1899. Except this piece does not have the “G” after the anchor…It has a “B”. Unless the “stamp” did not indent the silver enough to produce a “G”. i have seen a picture of These Three Marks that were used “in the Last quarter of the 19th century”, and that particular “G” is rather unusual in my opinion.
It has a Pleasant patina (almost like a gun metal effect), while under the base the silver is brighter…perhaps from lack of air or light?
Is it better to Keep the Patina or polish this piece? This little bowl has not moved for the past 50 years inside of a china closet. It is also marked Sterling B 719 M .
Its now my turn to take care of this “sugar cube bowl??”. (my guess).
Thank you…Yes a picture IS worth a thousand words…i’ll do better next time.
Best, Bill.

Hi there Bill, thanks for joining us on silver-collector. Yes, its Gorham, and the sickle is indeed for 1899. The “B” you see to the right of the lion and anchor is actually an old English “G” that when worn to any extent is easily mistaken for a “B”. Gorham began in 1848 and from that time until 1865 the lion was facing left, after that to the right. Also the word “sterling” and the pattern number confirms it is American and Gorham.

So you are now the steward of a 1899 fine sterling small dish…polish it gently. I would first wash it in warm soapy water with a small, soft brush…I use the horsehair brush from Haggerty with the wooden handle, very sturdy and will not scratch. After the initial soapy water wash, use a gentle silver polish such as Wright’s and a soft wipe to gently polish. For my polishing pads I use fake chamois from the auto parts store and cut it up into smaller peices I can fold…when it gets dirty, just squeeze it out under running water. After your polish, repeat the warm soapy water (I use liquid dishwashing detergent) then rinse well and pat it dry. Then when its really dry, buff by hand with a terry cloth.

Patina is good, tarnish is bad. Just go slow on the polishing and get it to where it appeals to your eye.

Regards,

Uncle Vic