Derby Silver Company design catalogues and historical information (2016)

An artdesigncafe / Design Meriden resource.

Derby Silver Company catalogue Derby Silver Company cocktail shaker Derby Silver Company map
Derby Silver Company building 1883 Derby Silver Company tea set 1883


"DERBY SILVER COMPANY, Birmingham (Derby), Conn.
Organized in 1873... [Derby Silver Company] was noted for its large line of silverplated toiletware and an economical line of plated hollowware sold under the trademark of Victor Silver Co. and the Victor Silver Plate Co. which was very popular. The factory continued operations in Birmingham (Derby) until July 1933 when it was consolidated with other plants in Meriden following the depression of 1929."

— Edmund P. Hogan in An American heritage: A book about the International Silver Company (1977), p. 160.


A. Derby Silver Company design catalogues and historical information

Material status: = online
= link to more info
= completely offline


1870s

Various newspapers, magazines and other sources

(c. 1873-). Various newspapers, magazines and other sources - search engines. (Updated 18 October 2017.)

Price list

Derby Silver Company. (1873). Price list of the finest grades of silver plated ware. 4 pp. (Updated 11 April 2017. A00660.)

Price list reprint

Derby Silver Company. (1873). Price list of the finest grades of silver plated ware. 4 pp. “Reprint” in Trade catalogues at the Winterthur Museum, Part 2 microfiche (no. 3074) (c. 1991). University Publications of America: Bethesda, MD. (Updated 11 April 2017. A00867-70.) [3]

Price list reprint

Derby Silver Company. (1874). Derby Silver Company’s standard 1874 price list of the finest grades of silver plated ware… 4 pp. (Viewed 15 May 2016. C00014-35.)

  • Offline - Connecticut Historical Society, Hartford, call no. Q974.62 B619d 1874.

Derby Silver in 1876 Philadelphia exhibition

(1876). List of awards made by the United States Centennial Commission to the American Exhibitors, International Exhibition, 1876, at Philadelphia. (10 May - 10 November 1876.) [Listed: Derby Silver Co. (p. 42). The actual award received is not indicated in this text.] S. T. Souder & Company: Philadelphia. (Viewed 16 June 2016. A00841-42.)

Derby Silver in 1876 Philadelphia exhibition

(1877). Souvenir of the Centennial exhibition [1876]: Connecticut’s representation at Philadelphia. [Core section: pp 99-111; also see exhibits list: pp. 124-27; Exhibitors including Derby Silver Company.]. (Viewed 25 June 2016. A00965-75.)

Derby Silver in 1877 American Institute fair

The American Institute, New York (1877, dates unknown). ["Bronze medal awarded to Derby Silver Co. for best silverplated ware on nickel base"]. In: May, Earl Chapin. (1947). A century of silver 1847-1947, (pp. 368-69). (Viewed 21 March 2017. AAA00588.)


1880s

Historical information

Orcutt, Samuel. (1880). On "Derby Silver Company", (pp. 408-09). In The history of the old town of Derby, Connecticut, 1642-1880. (Viewed 10 May 2017. A02426-28.)

"Derby Silver Company has been organized since 1872. Their present large factory was built in 1877. Mr. Edwin L. Britton inaugurated in Shelton the manufacture of Britannia or silver plated goods of various descriptions, and the business is now in a most prosperous condition and constantly increasing. The capital stock of the company is $140,000. They employ one hundred and thirty hands and produce annually $200,000 worth of goods; their monthly pay roll being $8,000. E. De Forest Shelton, president; William J. Miller, secretary; William E. Downs, treasurer." (Excerpt from source above.)

Historical information

Derby Silver Company. (1883). Derby Silver Co.’s illustrated catalogue and price list: of electro gold and silver plated hollow ware, spoons, knives, forks, etc., on hard white metal and nickel silver. 128 pp. (Updated 11 April 2017. A01036-37; AAA00026.)

Design catalogue excerpts

Derby Silver Co. (1883). [Presumably selected pages from 1883 design catalogue]. In Pyne Press. (1972). Victorian silverplated holloware; tea services, caster sets, ice water pitchers, card receivers, napkin rings, knife rests, toilet sets, goblets, cups, trays and waiters, epergnes, butter dishes, pickle casters, salts, tureens, communion services. Compiled by the editors of the Pyne Press. 156 pp. 16-page bibliography. Princeton, NJ. (Updated 23 April 2017. A01452; A02255.)

1884 advertisements

See the ads

Advertisement

Derby Silver Company. (January 1884). Advertisement: "... Makers of the Best Quadruple Plated Ware..." (with two illustrations). The Jewelers’ Circular, p. xvi. (Viewed 19 September 2017. G00480.)

Advertisement

Derby Silver Company. (February 1884). Advertisement: "... Makers of the Best Quadruple Plated Ware..." (with illustration). The Jewelers’ Circular, p. xvi. (Viewed 18 September 2017. G00486.)

Advertisement

Derby Silver Company. (April 1884). Advertisement: "... Manufacturers of the Finest Quality of Electro-Plated Ware... Factories: Birmingham, Conn., U.S.A.; Toronto, Ont., Canada... The Derby Silver Co., 31 Adelaide Street East, Toronto..." The Trader (Toronto, ON), p. 7. (Viewed 29 September 2017. G00824.)

Advertisement

(c. 1884-85). Advertisement: "The Derby Silver Company, Birmingham, Conn., Makers of Finest Silver Plated Ware", (p. 8). ["N.Y. salesroom, 3 Union Sq., West."] In: The Yale pot-pourri / Yale College [possibly a graduation booklet]. (Viewed 10 May 2017. A02424-25.)



1890s

Map

(1892). Birmingham, including Shelton and Derby Narrows, Connecticut, (p. 9 showing Derby Silver Company along Bridge). Sanborn-Perris Map Co. (Viewed 21 November 2016. AAA00474-76.)

Historical information

D.H. Hurd & Co. (1893). “Derby Silver Co.”, (p. 211). In Town and city atlas of the State of Connecticut. Compiled from government surveys, county records and personal investigations. Boston, MA. (Viewed 22 May 2016. A00690-91.)

"DERBY SILVER CO. (THE), Birmingham, Conn.
Makers of Fine Quadruple Plated Ware, Toilet Goods, superior quality. Watson J. Miller, President and Manager; Wesley L. Clark, Secretary and Treasurer; T H. Newcomb, Superintendent." (listing from above source).

News mention

(January 1893). News mention: "....Derby Silver Company... This company boasts of the fact that it has always preserved the most harmonious relations between itself and its employes..." House Furnishing Review, p. 37. (Viewed 6 October 2017. G01082.)

Historical information

Davis, William T. (Ed.) (c. 1897). On "Derby Silver Company", (p. 912). In The New England states, their constitutional, judicial, educational, commercial, professional and industrial history, vol. 2. Boston: D. H. Hurd & Co. (Viewed 9 June 2017. A02626; A02636.)

Derby Silver Company became part of the International Silver Company in 1898.



1900s

1903 advertisements

See the ads

Two advertisements

International Silver Company. (January-February 1903). Advertisements: "Makers of Wares of Sterling and Silver Plate... [Factories:] The Barbour Silver Co., The Holmes & Edwards Silver Co., Meriden Britannia Co., The Meriden Silver Plate Co., Rogers & Brother, Wilcox Silver Plate Co., The Meriden Cut Glass Co., The Derby Silver Co., Manhattan Silver Plate Co., The Forbes Silver Co., The Wm. Rogers Mfg. Co., The Rogers & Hamilton Co.; Simpson, Hall, Miller & Co., The Watrous Mfg. Co." House Furnishing Review. (Viewed 7 October 2017. G01135; G01151.)

Four advertisements

International Silver Company. (March-June 1903). Advertisements: "... Makers of Wares in Sterling and Silver Plate... [Factories:] The Barbour Silver Co., The Holmes & Edwards Silver Co., Meriden Britannia Co., The Meriden Silver Plate Co., Rogers & Brother, Wilcox Silver Plate Co., The Meriden Cut Glass Co., The Derby Silver Co., The Forbes Silver Co., The Wm. Rogers Mfg. Co., The Rogers & Hamilton Co.; Simpson, Hall, Miller & Co., The Watrous Mfg. Co., Middletown Plate Co. ..." House Furnishing Review. (Viewed 7 October 2017. G01154; G01159; .)



Advertisement

International Silver Company. (1 September 1909). Advertisement: "Sterling Silver, Silver Plate and Cut Glass... Factories: The Barbour Silver Co., The Holmes & Edwards Silver Co., Meriden Britannia Co., The Meriden Cut Glass Co., 1847 Rogers Bros., Rogers & Brother; Rogers, Smith & Co.; Wilcox Silver Plate Co., The Derby Silver Co., The Meriden Silver Plate Co., The Wm. Rogers Mfg. Co., The Rogers & Hamilton Co.; Simpson, Hall, Miller & Co., The Watrous Mfg. Co." The Jewelers’ Circular, p. 31. (Viewed 19 September 2017. G00475.)


1910s

Design catalogue

Derby Silver Company / (ISC). (191?). [Sales catalog] No. 2. Approximately 452 pages. (Updated 11 April 2017. A01122.)


1940s

Secondary source

May, Earl Chapin. (1947). "Derby Silver Company" mention, (pp. 118). In Century of silver, 1847-1947; Connecticut Yankees and a noble metal. 388 pp. New York: E.M. McBride & Company. (Updated 17 April 2017. DM.)


1970s

Derby Silver in 1975 exhibitions

(1975). Forms in metal: 275 years of metalsmithing in America exhibition catalogue. Exhibition dates: 17 January - 2 March 1975 at Finch College Museum of Art, New York and the Museum of Contemporary Crafts, New York; 16 March - 20 April 1975 at Cranbrook Academy of Art, Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. (Viewed 17 October 2016. AAA00361.)

Secondary source

Hogan, Edmund P. (1977). On "Derby Silver Company", [pp. 55, 70, 158, 160 (see excerpt above)]. In An American heritage: A book about the International Silver Company. (Updated 17 April 2017. DM.)


1980s

Secondary source

Hogan, Edmund P. (1980). "Derby Silver Company" mentions, [pp. 23 (call bells), 26 (photo of napkin ring, 1886), 39 (pitchers and Tilters), 41 (photo of pitcher, 1880s), 64 (photo of nut bowl, c. 1890), 111 (photo of tray / card receiver, 1883), 114 (photo of jewel casket, 1883), 117 (photos of jewel casket, c. 1900; Victor Silver Co jewel casket, c. 1900), 119-20 (bride’s baskets with photo of design, undated), 142-45 (illustrations bathroom ware - two sets by Victor Silver Co. and three by Derby Silver Co.)]. In The elegance of old silver plate and some personalities. (Updated 17 April 2017. DM.)

"Art nouveau designs were widely used, and in this field the Derby Silver Company seems to have excelled. Under both the Derby and Victor trademarks,4 they offered more than twenty-five designs with such names as ’Love’s messages’, ’The Blue Bells’, ’Shower of Roses’, ’The Peerless’, ’The Cupid’, ’The Birth and the Rose’, ’The Orchid Girl’, ’The Marguerite’, ’Joy of Dawn’, ’Cupid’s Courtship’, ’Pansy’, ’Iris’, ’Daffodil’ and ’Orchid’." (Excerpt from above.)

Derby Silver in 1986 Met exhibition

(1986). "Derby Silver Company", mentions (pp. 275-77, 419). In: Burke, Doreen Bulger et al. (1986). In pursuit of beauty: Americans and the Aesthetic Movement. (Book accompanying exhibition; includes primary source-oriented bibliography). New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art / Rizzoli. (Viewed 3 July 2016. A00522; A00977; A00981.)

Magazine article

Cramer, Diana. (September /October 1987). [Derby Silver Company - cigarette box]. Silver Magazine. (Viewed 8 September 2017. G00204.)


1990s

Magazine article

Cramer, Diana. (July / August 1991). [Derby Silver Company - silver plate]. Silver Magazine. (Viewed 7 September 2017. G00203.)

Derby Silver in 1995 Dallas exhibition

Venable, Charles L. (1995). Silver in America, 1840-1940: A century of splendor. Book / catalogue accompanying exhibition at the Dallas Museum of Art (6 November 1994 - 29 January 1995). (Viewed 21 August 2016. AAA00075.)


2000s

Secondary source

Rainwater, Dorothy T.; Fuller, Martin; Fuller, Collette. (2004). "Derby Silver Company" and "Victor Silver Company", (pp. 58, 261). Encyclopedia of American silver manufacturers, (revised and expanded 5th ed.). Schiffer Publishing: Atglen, PA. (Viewed 17 August 2017. A02888; A02914; A02914b; A02914c.)


2010s

Derby Silver Co. in 2016-17 exhibition

(c. 2016). Exhibition announcement for Shaken, stirred, styled: The art of the cocktail exhibition at Dallas Museum of Art (18 November 2016 - 12 November 2017). (Updated 2 December 2016. AAA000155-56; AAA00542-43.)

  • Online - Dallas Museum of Art;
  • Offline - Exhibition checklist - Dallas Museum of Art (confirms Derby Silver Co. / ISC cocktail shaker by George Berry in the exhibition).


n. d.

Map

(Undated). Derby Silver Company - fire insurance map. (Viewed 15 May 2017. A02437.)

Article

(Undated). "The Derby Silver Company". ("Showrooms were established in New York City, Chicago, and San Francisco. A considerable amount of silver was shipped to South America."). ConnecticutHistory.org. (Viewed 24 May 2016. A00699.)


Footnotes:
[1] Derby Silver Company, Derby, CT, was acquired by the International Silver Company in 1898. [See "A Guide to the International Silver Company Records, 1853-1921 (link to library entry)". University of Connecticut university libraries website. Viewed 24 May 2016. [A00660]

[2] For dates of operations: (Undated). "The Derby Silver Company" (online). ConnecticutHistory.org. Viewed 24 May 2016. [A00699]

[3] See Thompson, Eleanor McD. (1991). Guide to the microfiche edition of trade catalogues at the Winterthur Museum, part 2 (online), (entry no. 3074). 184 pp. Courtesy Winterthur Museum, Delaware. Viewed 18 June 2016. [A00867-68] (Please note, sometimes the trade catalogue itself is searchable in a library catalogue, and sometimes one needs to search the microform series as a whole.)

[4] See Hogan, Edmund P. (1980). The elegance of old silver plate and some personalities. Schiffer Publishing Limited: Exton, PA. ISBN 0-916838-30-7. Victor Silver Company is identified as a "secondary brand" of the Derby Silver Company concerning the marketing of toiletware c. 1894-86, (pp. 141-42). University of Connecticut Library call no. NK7240.5 .H63 1980 (link to library entry). (See worldcat.org for other locations.) Updated 17 April 2017.[DM]



DESIGN MERIDEN:
On Derby Silver - 1: designs in collections, exhibitions, etc. | 2: design catalogues, etc.


This compilation is currently in development. We are compiling scattered resources across North America and beyond with the goal of identifying a complete set. This initiative aims to enable more productive research and facilitate new discoveries. If you know of original documentation not listed above, please contact artdesigncafe.