Was it a wedding gift? Perhaps Mr. 'B' gave it to his new bride 'EE' as a token of his esteem? The most important items of jewelry she would wear during the day as the head of his household, this chatelaine carried perfume, scissors, a notepad and pencil, a thimble in a holder, a pipe cleaning tool, a glove hook and knife, and a sweet strawberry pin cushion with a silver top. All these necessities of life were attached to her hip with the silver clip and hung from two wonderful griffins facing each other.
This is by far and away the most intricate and largest chatelaine I have ever come across. The chatelaine itself, with no attachments, measures 12 inches long and 3.5 inches wide. It is fully hallmarked for Birmingham 1888 and is sterling silver. It is also marked "L.E" and was made by silversmith Lawrence Emanuel. Most likely three of the items were purchased with it although not made by the same maker. The perfume bottle (which is unfortunately soldered shut and no longer functions) was also made in Birmingham in 1888 and the makers mark is "D&F" for Deakin and Francis, Ltd., it measures 3.5 inches long and 2 inches wide. The notepad was also made in 1888, in Chester and bears the makers mark of "L&S" and is sterling silver with ivory pages, it measures 2.5 inches long and .75 inches wide and contains three pages, it is silver front and back. The scissors which I suspect were purchased with the other items are not hallmarked. They are most likely continental and were probably made in Germany. They are marked for sterling on the handles and with "T.Wr & S.C. - Germany" on the blade, which are steel. The case has a blue velvet liner which is in pretty good condition, with some wear, they still fit nice and snug. Together they measure 4.5 inches long and 2 inches wide at the widest part.
Other items which were probably added later include a wonderful strawberry shaped pin cushion (3" L x 1" W) with a silver (marked) top, the yellow seeds are actually embroidered on, not printed! Also, a thimble case hallmarked for Birmingham 1907 (2.75" L x 1.5" W), makers mark is H.M., with a gold wash inside and a sterling thimble. A three piece pipe cleaner kit (2.5" L x .75" W) with repoussed scoop, tamper and piercer, marked "Sterling WW 286". A wonderful machine turned pencil (3.75" L) which is retractable and still functioning, it is not marked but tests as silver. Lastly, a small hexagonal switchblade style button puller for baby buttons or gloves which also has a small scissor, the inside is steel and the case is silver, marked "935 F.C.B.", it measures 2 inches by .25 inches when closed.
This is a very rare and unusually large and complete chatelaine with a wonderful feel and balance. It isn't something that I would normally buy, but I just couldn't pass up such a stunning find. I also think that it's quite a good buy when you add up the value of each item and the chatelaine itself. It really deserves to be shadow boxed and hung on the wall, it is truly a work of art.
*****Please feel free to contact me for additional photos or information, I can only display nine here and it clearly isn't enough!******
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Item ID: N001092620091
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