This is a unique B.S.C.E.P. Barbour Silver Company Footed Tray. The tray is Silver Plated and has a detailed raised grapevine designed around the outer rim of tray. There are three clawed feet supporting the tray. The center of the tray has an etching, of what looks like a "Dutch" design, in copper and copper also outlines other details throughout the piece.
There are 4 markings on this tray. 1) The Barbour Silver Company markings off "Lion with Wings-Griffin/Thistle-Crown/Arm-and-Hammer" arising out of a Castle. NOTE: Under the symbols is a barely visible hand etched "24 D 99. 2) BSCEP in blocks representing "Barbour Silver Company Extra Electroplate". 3) "05 600 / 12 1/2" which is the tray number and the size of 12.5". 4) *+* "Star-Plus-Star" in blocks, which is an unknown mark. This piece does NOT have the "IS" lettering, which means this dates prior to being absorbed by the International Silver Company in 1898. Pieces after the 1898 were marked with "IS" along with the Barbour markings.
According to researchers at the Connecticut Historical Society, in 1881 or 1882, Samuel Barbour moved from Chicago to New Haven, Conn., where he and his brother Charles joined in forming the Barbour Brothers Company. During that time they were only marketers of silverplate products made by I. J. Steane & Co. of Hartford. In 1889, the Geer's city directory for that year contains the listing, "Barbour Bros. Co. Silversmiths" at 62 Market Street (Market Street, located downtown). In 1898, Barbour Silver Company became one of the first silver firms absorbed by the International Silver Company of Meriden, Conn.
I used a gentle silver cream to clean this piece up a little bit for photographs so the details could be seen, but it could use a real good cleaning and polishing. The piece is in great condition with the exception of some surface scratches and a bit of copper wearing, but to be expected for this age.
The tray measures 12.5" D X 1"H. This is an unique and exceptional piece, a wonderful collector's item. But, it is also a piece to be used, because it will be around for many, many more years to come!
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