A wonderful pair of early nineteenth century wine coolers made from Old Sheffield Plate dating to around 1820, Georgian in era.
Old Sheffield Plate is the process of fusing a layer of silver on to a layer of copper. The process was discovered by Thomas Boulsover in 1742. Old Sheffield plate is highly sought after due to it's rarity and age - it was superseded by cheaper electroplate in the early 1840's.
The traditional way of incorporating an armorial crest or monogram into an Old Sheffield Plate piece is by sinking a solid sterling silver ingot into the area to be engraved, this way no base metal (copper) would show through the engraving. You can see a rectangular shadow to each cooler where this was undertaken.
Of ever-popular campana form, the tops are decorated with a superb raised grapevine border, beautifully hand chased; detachable collars and cylindrical liners. Please see the picture to ensure they are reassembled correctly where the two pieces join in one place only.
The underside is struck with the famous figural Bell mark for the top notch silversmiths, Roberts Cadman & Co. Roberts, Cadman & Co was founded by Samuel Roberts and George Cadman in 1784. The firm was based on Eyre Street and marked its goods with the symbol of a bell. Roberts, Cadman & Co introduced the technique of manufacturing Old Sheffield Plate goods with silver threaded edges around 1785. This was an important innovation as it masked the copper that would otherwise be visible, giving an object a closer resemblance to solid silver.
The firm was renamed Roberts, Smith & Co in 1826 when a new partner joined the company a few years after George Cadman's death. William Sissons then joined the firm in 1834. After Roberts' retirement in 1848, the company was renamed Smith, Sissons & Company. Smith retired in 1858 and Sissons was joined by his sons, William and George. After this time, the firm is known as W & G Sissons.
Excellent condition, each has a rim diameter measuring 9 1/4" and each cooler stands 10 1/2" tall.
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