Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Panning For Gold, or should I say Silver?

This buying and selling game, yes I call it a "game" although I do take it very seriously, is a bit like panning for gold or silver in this case. Last year I bought from an auction a box full of "silver cutlery", paid a little too much for it for my liking (auction fever strikes again) but figured that it should at least 'wipe its nose' once sold.
Silver Cutlery
The other day I spent a couple of hours sorting through it, hence the title of this post because it is a bit like 'panning for gold'. Lots of effort but every now and again there's a nice nugget to be found although in this case, we are talking about silver.
Silver Scrap & Various
Most was "scrap silver" although there were a couple of nice pieces amongst the box full of silver cutlery. I liked the silver knives and forks that were stamped with "The Great British Hotel, Bangor" and possibly "silver plate". They are very decorative pieces of silver cutlery and looked up the hotel which is now a students residents, it must of been a great hotel in its day judging by the look of the building.
Silver Cutlery from The Great British Hotel, Bangor
 I can imagine the silver cutlery all laid out at the table, gleaming in the sun and what a place to stay.
Silver Cutlery from The Great British Hotel, Bangor
Solomon Hougham Georgian Solid Silver Spoons Silver Hallmarks
My favourite find is a solid silver spoon and possibly made by the silversmith "SSolomon Hougham", never heard of him but my research on the assay office website shows its a possibility. If it is then its a lucky find because his work is very much sort after, not so much the spoons but I have seen some of Solomon Hougham pieces fetching very good money, one to look out for I guess.
Solomon Hougham Georgian Solid Silver Spoons Silver Hallmarks
So, just off to continue sifting through the box full, or should I say panning because its a bit like that, time consuming, thankfully, not as hard a job as I can imagine 'panning for gold' would of been but great fun with a hint of excitement.
Scrap Silver Plated Cutlery
Most of my finds are available for sale either on ebay or my website, google charliequins and i am sure you will find either, or click on the link above.

If like me you are just learning about silver, either buying or selling then the following links are very useful -

Birmingham Assay Office - Information about silver hallmarks.
Silver Hallmarks Guide - Good site plenty of information
Oh, almost forgot, here's a photo of the Great British Hotel if you are interested, if you ever stayed there  then I would love to hear about it.
Scrap Silver Plated Cutlery

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