This is a Rare 20thC Arts and Crafts Movement George Gebelein Sterling Silver Bangle Bracelet signed Gebelein (in capital letters) Sterling/ Boston. The date C1910-20 is an educated guess based on his biographical information. The bangle is oval in shape and has a ribbed design with nice heft and weight. It measures 8 1/4" around the inside measurement, 1/4 inch wide and weighs a nice 25.6 grams. Beautiful condition. Just from searching the internet, examples of silversmith George Gebelein's work is not easily found and quite rare.
The following biographical information is from the Winterthur's website: George Christian Gebelein, perhaps America's foremost silversmith of the 20th century, has been referred to as "the modern Paul Revere." He was born in Germany in 1878, the son of Margeretha Solger and Johann Nicolaus Gebelein. The family moved to the United States shortly after his birth, settling in Cambridge, Massachusetts. George Gebelein graduated from the Harvard Grammar School in June 1893.
After graduation, Gebelein worked briefly at a woolen mill and then began an apprenticeship in silversmithing at Goodnow and Jenks of Boston. There he developed a passion for handcrafted silver. After working for several other silversmiths, including Tiffany's, Gebelein opened his own silversmithing and jewelry business at 79 Chestnut Street, Boston, in 1909. Here, he sold not only his own work, but also those of his assistants, items produced by other companies, and antique silver goods, as well as pewter, brass, and copper ware. In addition, he crafted domestic and ecclesiastical silver, flatware, and such presentation pieces as trophies and cups, including the Harvard Cup. Gebelein employed a jewelry designer, but in all likelihood the jewelry settings themselves were probably done elsewhere. During his early years in business, Gebelein taught silversmithing to a select group of pupils.
During his fifty-year career, Gebelein exhibited his work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Brooklyn Museum, and the Currier Gallery of Art. The Boston Society of Arts and Crafts awarded him its Master Craftsman's Medal, and he garnered other honors from the Art Institute of Chicago, and at the Panama Pacific Exposition of 1915. In addition to producing items for private individuals, Gebelein had commissions from the United States Military Academy at West Point, the College of William and Mary, and the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C.
In 1901, Gebelein married Eva May Pelren, the daughter of Rosa and Moses Pelren, of Concord, New Hampshire. They raised four sons and three daughters at their home in Wellesley Hills, outside Boston. One son worked in his father's shop, although not as a silversmith. After George Gebelein died in 1945, his family kept the business going, but in 1984 it was sold.
For more information about George Gebelein's life and work, see George Christian Gebelein, Boston Silversmith, 1878-1945, by Magaretha Gebelein Leighton (Boston: The Author, 1976), and George Christian Gebelein: The Craft and Business of a "Modern Paul Revere," by Alexandra Deutsch, a 1995 thesis done in the Winterthur Program in Early American Culture.
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