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Unidentifiable mark on silver t bar chain

i have a t bar chain and it has the initials B.Bs with the s having an underscore beneath… the lion passant is on every link there is an anchor and a what looks like the letter m but to be honest it looks more like single lines so going to try get a better magnifying glass and work out what it is… its quite heavy around 70g and near enough everything on the chain has one mark or another on it clasps, links, t bar … i will try and get a picture uploaded asap… i have searched and searched and can find references to B.B but all initials on t bars seem to be in boxes etc this is just stamped directly in to the silver not within any type of box, circle etc and i can find no reference to a B.B with an underscored s… thank you for any help you can give

Keep trying with the picture - it will really be a great help for identification. In the meantime I have deleted your your near-duplicate post under our Photographing Silver section so that we can keep everything in one place.

I have a little more info and going to get my daughter to upload photos tomorrow… on the T bar where the B.Bs is on the right on the left is the lion passant and next to it is the letter u in a box where the top corners are cut off and the bottom line is wiggly if that makes sense… Also the circular big link near clasp has a different symbol on it the anchor and it looks like an x in a similar box… And finally the clasp has yet another different date letter it looks like a w or m in a similar box with the lion passant next to it…

It sounds as if the various parts were produced and assayed at different times and assembled later. I look forward to your pictures.

I have managed to get some pictures though not very clear of the marks on clasp etc the B.Bs can be seen… I did do a whole picture but was too big to fit…I am still unsure if watch chain etc as it seems to fit as a necklace as clasp and circle clip together but not sure if it should have had something on it the circle that is… as can be seen in one of the pictures the lion is on links… thank you for any help
t bar 4.jpeg
t bar 1.jpeg
t bar 2.jpeg

From what I can see of the marks on the left of the T-bar in your picture the shape of the punches indicate a Birmingham assay so the letter “u” is that for the assay year 1919/20. That fits with the anchor which you describe on other bits of the chain. The selection of date letters is not necessarily unusual. The individual parts would have been assayed separately and then assembled later from stock parts.

Unfortunately there is no good comprehensive reference for Birmingham makers’ marks so I cannot tell you exactly who BBs were. Bs of course conventionally stands for Brothers.

I am sure it would have originally been a watch chain but as watch chains are not much in demand these days there has been a tendency for them to be converted into necklaces.

Thank you for your help would love to identify the makers mark it is quite long from clasp to loop 17" so i presume it could be worn as a necklace now…

You could contact the Birmingham Assay Office via their web site:

BBs is the mark of Bishtons Brothers, first registered 1919

Thank you Tomnik,

That ties in with the date mark u which someone identified as 1919 x

Im confused a little more now tomnik sorry :slight_smile:

after getting your message it led me sites i had not visited before and to a chester makers marks site. On there was the exact makers mark that is on the t bar but it was listed as the Brockington brothers.

could you shed any light on this for me please

thank you

I guess you may have found my site with the following illustration:

This is not the same as yours. It is a cameo mark where yours is incuse; in addition the stop is in a different place.

So there is no conflict.

I’d guess the operating dates of these makers come into the mix as well

Hi moderator/john

I did follow your advice moderator and sent a picture and message to the assay,s office and have only just found a response from them below…

Thank you for your email enquiry.

The initials BBs belonged to Bishton Brothers, Birmingham. Thomas William and Alfred Henry Bishton first registered the mark in 1919 looks like the same year the chain was hallmarked.

Hope this helps,

Kind Regards,


So john they have given exact information you have… I just wish i could find somewhere to read about them all i have found is an old paper clipping from the london gazette saying they dissolved there partnership in 1921 …

i really appreciate all your help both thank you so much this has been very rewarding and interesting …

you may have already seen this but i thought you may be interested if you have not so thought i would share with you… here is the clipping from the london gazette.

sorry think i forgot to attach it