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We have silver salad servers, imported into New Zealand around 1930’s or 1940’s, marked W&H and SYA, also including the classic Walker and hall flag. What is the meaning of SYA, and does it indicate the possible age range of the salad servers?

Apologies for no photograph.

If your salad servers are silver then the hallmark will tell you what the date is. As you do not mention a hallmark I have to assume that they are, at best, electroplate and as such very difficult to date. You do not say exactly how the SYA is related to the W&H pennant; e.g. in line with, same size, same type face, so it is difficult to speculate in an informed way. However I would suggest that the SYA is more likely to be unrelated to the manufacturer’s mark and is more likely to be that of a retailer or owner.

Aha. Thank you for that advice.

Under better light, I can make out six squares, followed immediately by the W&H pennant.

  1. W
  2. &
  3. H
  4. S
  5. Y with a dot at the top in the centre ie inside the top of the arms of the Y
  6. An A with a short gap followed by what looks like a 7 with a more vertical (ie less angled) leg and a shorter tail than a normal 7 off the top to the left.

Towards the main part of the servers are a set of mainly numerals
R, then what looks like an exponent 2 ie superscript, 725803

I hope that helps helps raather than confuses the situation.

That is both a help and a bit of a confusion. I cannot make myself imagine exactly what the SYA looks like; it really is a case of one picture tells a thousand words. There are a few W&H electroplate marks pictured here - you may spot something familiar. You will note that they almost all have an S which I suspect stands for Sheffield.

However the R-superscript-2 is almost certainly R-superscript-D (or d) and the number is the design registration number. This dates the design to 1926 (not the manufacture which could be any date following).