GORHAM RONDO STERLING SILVER Silverware set with box
GORHAM RONDO STERLING SILVER Silverware set with box
   $1999.0
Reed & Barton
Reed & Barton "Fragrance" Sterling Silverware
   $2000.0
Towle Sterling Candlelight Silverware, Set of 61 pieces!
Towle Sterling Candlelight Silverware, Set of 61 pieces!
   $2000.0
Sheffield Original Silverware Albany 95 Piece Set!! EPNS A1 Silver Plating!!
Sheffield Original Silverware Albany 95 Piece Set!! EPNS A1 Silver Plating!!
   $2000.0
WESTMORLAND Milburn Rose Silverware Service for 6 Persons + Serving Pieces 51 pc
WESTMORLAND Milburn Rose Silverware Service for 6 Persons + Serving Pieces 51 pc
   $2000.0
1971 GORHAM SILVERWARE 65 PIECE SERVING
1971 GORHAM SILVERWARE 65 PIECE SERVING
   $1999.0
Wallace Silversmiths Grande Baroque Silverware 30 Pieces  6 Set Of 5 Pieces
Wallace Silversmiths Grande Baroque Silverware 30 Pieces 6 Set Of 5 Pieces
   $1950.0
Towle Old Master Sterling Silverware
Towle Old Master Sterling Silverware
   $1900.0
HALLMARK STERLING SILVERWARE PATTER FIESTA 59 PIECES SET FLOWER ON TIP
HALLMARK STERLING SILVERWARE PATTER FIESTA 59 PIECES SET FLOWER ON TIP
   $1900.0
Wallace Silversmiths Grande Baroque Silverware 24 Pieces  6 Set
Wallace Silversmiths Grande Baroque Silverware 24 Pieces 6 Set
   $1850.0
GORHAM STERLING SILVERWARE CHANTILLY LION, ANCHOR, G 1895-1950
GORHAM STERLING SILVERWARE CHANTILLY LION, ANCHOR, G 1895-1950
   $1800.0
Westmorland Milburn Rose 91 Piece Silverware, 1940, Sterling Silver
Westmorland Milburn Rose 91 Piece Silverware, 1940, Sterling Silver
   $1782.0
44 PC STERLING SILVER ROGERS
44 PC STERLING SILVER ROGERS "BRIDAL VEIL" FLATWARE SILVERWARE SET
   $1799.99
63 pc set of Gorham Sterling Silverware, Chantilly pattern with no monogram
63 pc set of Gorham Sterling Silverware, Chantilly pattern with no monogram
   $1745.0
Reed and Barton Sterling Silverware Set, Sterling Wheat Pattern, 61 Pieces!
Reed and Barton Sterling Silverware Set, Sterling Wheat Pattern, 61 Pieces!
   $1599.99
58 Piece Wallace Rose Point Sterling Silverware Set - No Mono - Service for 12
58 Piece Wallace Rose Point Sterling Silverware Set - No Mono - Service for 12
   $1599.0
Classic Antique Baker Inlaid Server Buffet With Silverware Drawer
Classic Antique Baker Inlaid Server Buffet With Silverware Drawer
   $1600.0
Wallace Sir Christopher Sterling Silverware 27 Pieces 6 Set Of 4 Pieces
Wallace Sir Christopher Sterling Silverware 27 Pieces 6 Set Of 4 Pieces
   $1600.0
Manchester Mfg Co Sterling Silver SILVERWARE 76 PIECES 1936 COPENHAGEN Pattern
Manchester Mfg Co Sterling Silver SILVERWARE 76 PIECES 1936 COPENHAGEN Pattern
   $1550.0
VINTAGE STERLING SILVER FLATWARE SILVERWARE - 53 PCS - MONOGRAM
VINTAGE STERLING SILVER FLATWARE SILVERWARE - 53 PCS - MONOGRAM "M" - WITH CHEST
   $1550.0
STIEFF
STIEFF "Corsage" 57 Piece Sterling Silver Flatware-Silverware
   $1500.0
ALVIN 57 PIECE STERLING SILVER FLATWARE SILVERWARE SET WITH BOX
ALVIN 57 PIECE STERLING SILVER FLATWARE SILVERWARE SET WITH BOX
   $1499.0
International Silver Joan of Arc Silverware (5 six piece place setting)
International Silver Joan of Arc Silverware (5 six piece place setting)
   $1495.0
Crown Princess Sterling Silverware by Fine Arts Silver (1949) 6 settings &extras
Crown Princess Sterling Silverware by Fine Arts Silver (1949) 6 settings &extras
   $1495.0
56 Pc Westmorland
56 Pc Westmorland "Milburn Rose" Sterling Silverware No Monogram FREE SHIPPING!!
   $1500.0
Westmorland Martha and George Washington Sterling Silverware 46 pieces in all
Westmorland Martha and George Washington Sterling Silverware 46 pieces in all
   $1500.0
NATIONAL SILVER MARGARET ROSE FLATWARE 56 PIECES TOTAL SILVERWARE PATTERN #1938
NATIONAL SILVER MARGARET ROSE FLATWARE 56 PIECES TOTAL SILVERWARE PATTERN #1938
   $1499.99
Solid Sterling Silverware (39 pc. set) PLUS Sterling Silver Plated (9 pc.)
Solid Sterling Silverware (39 pc. set) PLUS Sterling Silver Plated (9 pc.)
   $1475.0
 Silver Silverware set  International Silver Co  2665 grams Flatware
Silver Silverware set International Silver Co 2665 grams Flatware
   $1400.0
Towle Old Mirror Sterling Silver Silverware Set Incomplete Spoons Knives Forks
Towle Old Mirror Sterling Silver Silverware Set Incomplete Spoons Knives Forks
   $1399.0
VINTAGE STERLING SILVER INTERNATIONAL WILD ROSE SILVERWARE 51 PIECES
VINTAGE STERLING SILVER INTERNATIONAL WILD ROSE SILVERWARE 51 PIECES "VERY NICE"
   $1399.0
International Silver Pine Tree Pattern 1927 Sterling 56 Pieces + Silverware Box
International Silver Pine Tree Pattern 1927 Sterling 56 Pieces + Silverware Box
   $1349.0
1920'S SILVER PLATED? SILVERWARE - NUMEROUS HALLMARKS - 18 KNIVES & FORKS
1920'S SILVER PLATED? SILVERWARE - NUMEROUS HALLMARKS - 18 KNIVES & FORKS
   $1339.99
Antique Silverware mother of pearls handles, sliver/p serving size of twelve
Antique Silverware mother of pearls handles, sliver/p serving size of twelve
   $1200.0
Silver Cutlery Set Silverplate by MENESES Antique Silverware 118 Pieces Lot
Silver Cutlery Set Silverplate by MENESES Antique Silverware 118 Pieces Lot
   $1249.0
35 pcs. Silverware 6 people + accessories from J.FRAGET *
35 pcs. Silverware 6 people + accessories from J.FRAGET *
   $1224.86
Wallace Sterling Silverware 48 pieces plus 8 matching  butter knives
Wallace Sterling Silverware 48 pieces plus 8 matching butter knives
   $1200.0
Real Flatware Westmorland Sterling Silverware 8 set 40 pieces John & Priscilla
Real Flatware Westmorland Sterling Silverware 8 set 40 pieces John & Priscilla
   $1199.0
VINTAGE 37 PC STERLING SILVER FLATWARE SILVERWARE UTENSILS PLACE SETTING DINNE
VINTAGE 37 PC STERLING SILVER FLATWARE SILVERWARE UTENSILS PLACE SETTING DINNE
   $1200.0
Gorham Sterling Silverware 24 Pieces  6 Set Of 4 Pieces
Gorham Sterling Silverware 24 Pieces 6 Set Of 4 Pieces
   $1200.0
Vintage Towle Candlelight Flatware Silverware 5pc table setting + Serving Pieces
Vintage Towle Candlelight Flatware Silverware 5pc table setting + Serving Pieces
   $1135.0
Antique 1897 RW & S Pat Sterling Silverware Set
Antique 1897 RW & S Pat Sterling Silverware Set
   $1150.0

The word silverware encompasses a multitude of items nowadays and can include jewellery, antique silver tea caddies, flatware, silver handled baskets, porringers, coins and silver medals or trophies among many others. However, times have changed considerably since the Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian periods when silverware was in daily use mainly by people who were wealthy or by royalty.

Useful items of silverware were made as far back as the 12th century and just a short time later cutlery and flatware became extremely popular and fashionable. The antique silver items that have survived to this day were made from the same quality of silver that was used in coinage.

During the Industrial Revolution many ordinary people outside of the nobility accrued vast personal fortunes very quickly and the upper middle class emerged. These new money people invested heavily in silverware commencing around the 1840s, and were anxious to show off their wealth. In Victorian times people stopped eating with their fingers and began using knives and forks and for the newly rich they naturally were made from silver. During this period English flatware silversmiths became very busy serving both the European and American markets.

Just as today we collect labour saving gadgetry, the upper middle classes collected sterling silver utensils as symbols of wealth but also for regular use. Silver tea services, tea caddies, coffee pots, fruit baskets, sugar bowls; milk jugs and innumerable other items of flatware and cutlery could be found in all parts of Victorian houses.

As can be seen in large antique silver collections the Victorian period certainly saw silver at a peak but at the beginning of WWII there was a remarkable decline not least due the lack of technology in machinery to make the items. All sterling silverware had historically been handmade and stamped by machinery. Labour costs were higher during the Great Depression and even wealthy households began to feel the pinch. They employed fewer servants, didnt throw as many large dinner parties and the maintenance of silver was not an insignificant task. Hand polishing sterling silver was time consuming especially for those items that were ornate and intricately designed. Hence there was a shift in popularity to flatware since it was much easier to polish and maintain.

The value of silver goes up and down as a precious metal but for collectors of antique silver to find perfectly preserved Georgian, Edwardian and Victorian silverware in perfect condition is a joy. There is something decadent about drinking from a silver goblet and using silver knives, forks and spoons at a dinner party. Serving coffee from a sterling silver coffee pot that has lasted for well over 100 years puts some of our porcelain and china equivalents to shame.

As an investment antique silverware will always be valuable and if the price of silver falls, you can guarantee that it will rise again in the future. Unfortunately the demand for silver is greater than the supply and some of the exquisite silver pieces that can be found from time to time in antique markets or hidden away in the attic are sold for scrap and melted down, a process that simply destroys the work of Englands great silversmiths along with part of our history.