W. W. Lyman - designs, exhibitions and historical information

ADC staff
artdesigncafé - design | Design Meriden | 24 September 2020 | Updated 21 July 2021
W. W. Lyman pitcher

Above, illustration of W. W. Lyman patent drawing for refrigerating-pitcher (letters patent no. 20,499; 8 June 1858). For more information, see the entry listed below.

"... In 1844, young [W. W.] Lyman went in business for himself, making cast Britannia spoons, coffee and teapots, etc. ... At the time of his death [in 1891], he was one of the directors and largest stockholders of the Meriden Britannia Company. He was also, until 1878, president of the Meriden Cutlery Company... and the first president of the Meriden Flint Glass Company... "

— excerpt from "The inventive W. W. Lyman of Meriden, Conn." by E. P. Hogan in Spinning Wheel, (April 1974), pp. 14-7. For more information, see the entry listed below.

A. W. W. Lyman designs in collections

This resource webpage is in development.

Info/photo status: = info and photo online
= info online, no photo
= completely offline


1844-52 - coffee pot

William W. Lyman. (1844-52). Coffee pot. Pewter. (Accession no. 00.7.64. Viewed 27 September 2020. J00781).

n. d.

n. d. - teapot

William W. Lyman. (undated). Teapot. (Accession no. 64.1777. Viewed 22 July 2021. J01408).

B. W. W. Lyman designs in selected auction houses


c. 1845 - teapot

W. W. Lyman. (c. 1845). Teapot. (Viewed 4 February 2021. L01691).

C. W. W. Lyman designs in exhibitions


This section is in development.

See our Design Meriden compilation listing over 1000 exhibitions since 1851, featuring historical design associated with the Meriden area.

D. W. W. Lyman - historical information (by year)

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


Various newspapers, magazines and other sources

(c. ). Various newspapers, magazines and other sources - search engines.

1849 - book

Perkins, G.W. (1849). "Appendix 12. Manufactures in Meriden in 1849... Wm. Lyman— Britannia ware of various kinds; 6 hands... " In Historical sketches of Meriden, (pp. 115-17). Franklin E. Hinman: West Meriden. (Viewed 11 June 2016. A00779-80).


1856 - map

(1856). Map of New Haven County, Connecticut [with marking for W. W. Lyman house and shop]. H & C. T. Smith: Philadelphia. (Viewed 1 October 2020. E01632).

1858 patents

See the patents

1858 - patent - refrigerating-pitcher

W. W. Lyman. (8 June 1858) Letters patent no. 20,499: Refrigerating-pitcher. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01571).

1858 - patent - improved method of sealing preserve-cans

W. W. Lyman. (31 August 1858). Letters patent no. 21,348: Improved method of sealing preserve-cans. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01572).

1858 - patent - improvement in fruit-cans

W. W. Lyman. (28 December 1858). Letters patent no. 22,436: Improvement in fruit-cans. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01573).


1862 - patent - improved fruit-can

William W. Lyman. (10 June 1862). Letters patent no. 35,529: Improved fruit-can. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01575).

1864 - patent - improvement in fruit-jars

Elbridge Harris, assignor to Wm. M. Lyman. (9 February 1864). Letters patent no. 41,575: Improvement in fruit-jars. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01574).

1866 patents

See the patents

1866 - patent - improved stopper for fruit-jars

William W. Lyman. (2 January 1866). Letters patent no. 51,844: Improved stopper for fruit-jars. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01576).

1866 - patent - improved device for opening fruit-cans

William W. Lyman. (22 May 1866). Letters patent no. 54,929: Improved device for opening fruit-cans. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01578).

1867 - patent - improvements in the manufacture of tea and coffee-pots

William W. Lyman, assignor to Meriden Britannia Company. (15 October 1867). Letters patent no. 69,922: Improvements in the manufacture of tea and coffee-pots. (Viewed 21 July 2021. AAA02239).

1868 patents

See the patents

1868 - patent - improvement in fruit-jars

John Weidig, assignor to William W. Lyman. (5 May 1868). Letters patent no. 77,555: Improvement in fruit-jars. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01577).

1868 - patent - improved fruit-jar

William W. Lyman. (28 July 1868) Letters patent no. 80,296: Improved fruit-jar. (Viewed 22 July 2021. R01582).

1868 - patent - improved butter-dish

William W. Lyman. (28 July 1868). Letters patent no. 80,297: Improved butter-dish. (Viewed 22 July 2021. R01583).

1869 - article mention

(8 June 1869). The election; Russell S. Gladwin elected mayor ("The vote for Aldermen... William W. Lyman" [most votes]). Meriden Daily Republican, p. 2, col. 2. (Viewed 20 January 2020. F01980).


1870 patents

See the patents

1870 - patent - improvement in apparatus for preserving fruit

William W. Lyman. (10 May 1870). Letters patent no. 102,951: Improvement in apparatus for preserving fruit. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01580).

1870 - patent - improvement in can-openers

William W. Lyman. (12 July 1870). Letters patent no. 105,346: Improvement in can-openers. (Viewed 18 October 2021. Q00768).

1870 - patent - improvement in can-openers

William W. Lyman. (19 July 1870). Letters patent no. 105,583: Improvement in can-openers. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01581).

1877 patents

See the patents

1877 - patent - design for match-holders

William W. Lyman. (6 March 1877; filed 20 February 1877). Design no. 9,822: Design for match-holders. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01579).

1877 - patent - design for glass shades

William W. Lyman, assignor to Meriden Flint Glass Company. (31 July 1877; filed 20 June 1877). Design no. 10,134: Design for glass shades. (Viewed 21 July 2021. AAA01141).


1881 - directory listing mention

(1881). "Stock Companies" section listing: " Meriden Flint Glass Company; Capital, $50,000. President, William W. Lyman ... " In Meriden directory for 1881; containing a general directory of its citizens, business directory, street directory, (p. 186). Price, Lee & Co.: New Haven, CT. (Viewed 10 October 2020. F01486-88).


1906 - historical information

Gillespie, Charles Bancroft & Curtis, George Munson. (1906). Biographies of Meriden Flint Glass Co. management: William W. Lyman (President) (pp. 296-98) including portrait. In A century of Meriden: A historic record and pictorial description of the town of Meriden, Connecticut and the men who made it, from earliest settlement to close of its first century of incorporation, (Part II). (Viewed 21 July 2021. A00791-92.)


1936 - spotlighted article mention

Snow, William G. (17 April 1936). Meriden’s silverware industry history [with mention of William W. Lyman]. The Meriden Daily Journal [Fiftieth Anniversary issue (1886-1936)], unknown page number. (Viewed 30 December 2020. D01699).

1936 - article mention

(17 April 1936). International Silver Co. [with mention of W. W. Lyman]. The Meriden Daily Journal [Fiftieth Anniversary issue (1886-1936)], unknown page number. (Viewed 25 November 2020. D01700).


1956 - book mentions

Wendover, Sanford H. (1956). On William W. Lyman, (pp. 86, 88). In 150 years of Meriden. Meriden: Meriden Sesquicentennial Committee. (Published in connection with the observance of the city’s sesquicentennial, June 17-23, 1956). (Viewed 27 November 2016. A00789-90; E01635-36).

"... [In 1844, Charles] Parker is reported to have been the first local manufacturer to plate spoons and forks. Some hollowware was also made... Ashbil Griswold and others were making pewter kitchen utensils in Meriden as early as 1808... By 1850, Ashbil Griswold, the pioneer, was producing britannia ware in North Meriden or Fraryville. James A. Frary and Couch & Benham made similar wares nearby. In East Meriden, or Bangall, Isaac C. Lewis, George Curtis, and Darius Bingham, Jr. turned out britannia ware in addition to pewter. The Curtises, Edwin E. and Lemuel J., were making britannia on Curtis Street. Enos Curtis had a britannia factory at the north end on Britannia Street. The pewter shop of William W. Lyman was also on Britannia Street. S. L. Cone and L. G. Baldwin were also engaged in Britannia manufacture... Some factories employed 40 or more hands..." (Excerpt from above, p. 84 & 86.)


1974 articles

See the articles

1974 - article

Hogan, E. P. (April 1974). The inventive W. W. Lyman of Meriden, Conn. [with portrait and photos of designs; excerpt at top of this webpage]. Spinning Wheel, pp. 14-7. (Viewed 14 July 2021. R01505).

1974 - article mention

Hogan, E. P. (September 1974). Ashbil Griswold— pewterer [with mention of W. W. Lyman]. Spinning Wheel, pp. 18-22. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01570).

1976 articles

See the articles

1976 - article mention

Hogan, E. P. (March 1976). Joseph Bourne and the Meriden Flint Glass Co. (Part I) [with mention and portrait of W. W. Lyman]. Spinning wheel magazine, pp. 8-11 and cover. (Updated 21 July 2021. AAA00612; R01564. DM.)

  • Online - archive.org. (Email-based registration required.)
  • Offline - Meriden Public Library, "Meriden - Industries - Glass" file.

1976 - article mention

Hogan, E. P. (April 1976). Joseph Bourne and the Meriden Flint Glass Co. (Part II) [with mention of W. W. Lyman]. Spinning wheel magazine, pp. 24-27. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01565).

1979 - article mention (reprint)

Hogan, E. P. (November 1979). Ashbil Griswold— pewterer [with mention of W. W. Lyman]. Spinning Wheel, pp. 16-20. (Viewed 21 July 2021. R01569).


1980 - secondary source

Hogan, Edmund P. (1980). On "W. W. Lyman" (apprentice to Ashbil Griswold, husband of Ashbil Griswold’s adopted daughter; partner of Curtis and Lyman; director of Meriden Britannia; president of Meriden Cutlery Company; president of Meriden Flint Glass Company) (reproduced illustrations of W. W. Lyman and his wife; Meriden Britannia building and "board"; Lyman fruit jars; patent), (pp. 154-59). In The elegance of old silver plate and some personalities. Schiffer Publishing Limited: Exton, PA. (Viewed 21 July 2021. DM.)

1988 - secondary source

Vumbaco, Brenda J. (1988). Photo of house of William W. Lyman (Meriden Flint Glass Co. President), (p. 53). In Meriden – Connecticut crossroads: An illustrated history. Windsor Publications: Northridge, CA. (Viewed 21 July 2021. A00804. DM.)


2007 - article mention

Turano, Andrew F. and Smith, Robert G. (Summer 2007). Isaac Chauncy Lewis, britannia worker [with mention of Wm. W. Lyman]. The Bulletin (Pewter Collector’s Club of America), vol. 13, no. 7, pp. 3-18. (Viewed 25 February 2021. R01341).

Click the following link to see designs and documentation for other historical companies from the Meriden area, and those that were connected to the International Silver Company; go to the historical Meriden design overview page and scroll down to section D: "ISC, predecessors & divisions", E: "Other featured companies" and G: "Featured early pewter / britannia / silver makers".