Gorham Antique US Sterling Silver Flatware
Some people specialize in collecting flatware from the Gorham Company. While Jabez Gorham and Henry Webster produced the first pieces from coin-silver in 1831, some people choose to concentrate on the period after designer William J. Codman joined the company in 1891. Most of those pieces were made from sterling silver.What are examples of Gorham patterns?
Gorham produced over 640 different sterling patterns on their sterling silver tableware including the following:
- Fairfax: Originally produced by Durgin Silver, Gotham purchased the sterling silver pattern featuring straight lines and simple handles in 1968.
- Strasbourg: Produced from 1897 through 1950, this antique pattern of Gorham sterling silver flatware features scrollwork on tip-heavy sterling silver pieces.
- Etruscan: Produced from 1913 through 1991, this Gorham silver pattern features symmetrical keys with a Greek key at the bottom of this sterling tableware.
- Buttercup: Produced from 1899 to 1950, this antique pattern of Gorham sterling silver features buttercups, leaves, and scrolls.
- Rondo: Produced from 1951 to 2007, this Gorham silver tableware pattern features scrollwork on symmetrical sterling silver pieces.
Most pieces of Gorham silver have a marking showing when they were made. Ways to identify these markings include the following:
- 1848 to 1894: Gorham silver was marked with a new letter each year, starting with A and continuing through Q.
- 1894 to 1933: The company used a series of different symbols on the silver, including crosses, animals, musical instruments, and weapons.
- 1933 to 1940: No year markings were used on pieces in these years.
- 1933 to 1940: Last number of the year was inside a geometric shape with the same number of sides as the decade. For example, in 1943, Gorham placed the number 3 inside a square on the silver pieces; in 1963, the number 3 was placed inside a hexagon on Gotham silver tableware.
Many times, a sterling silver silverware set consists of:
- Eight sterling silver salad forks
- Eight sterling silver dinner forks
- Eight sterling silver dinner knives
- Eight sterling dinner spoons
- Eight sterling silver teaspoons
- One cold meat fork,
- One sterling sugar serving spoon
- One butter serving knife
There are many different Gorham silver serving pieces that can be added to the basic set, including the following and more:
- Fish forks: This flat piece usually has four long tines.
- Fish knives: This is designed for removing bones from fish.
- Brandy warmer: This is a small container so that brandy could be heated on the stove.
- Pie knife: This piece is a silver serving piece designed to slip under a piece of pie in the baking pan.
- Fruit knife: This knife is designed to segment a piece of fruit at the table.
- Butter pick: This piece is designed to spear individual servings of butter off a larger piece.