Fletcher & Gardiner American Silver Presentation Game Platter from the Rodgers Service, Philadelphia, 1817
Of oval form with a gadrooned rim, this game size platter has great weight like most Fletcher and Gardiner silver. It also has an incredible provenance.
Commodore John Rodgers was responsible for building Baltimore's land defenses during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. During the battle of September 12 & 13, 1814, Rodger's land defenses successfully held against the British Army's assault as did Fort McHenry successfully repulse the British naval attack.
The Battle of Baltimore is one of the most famous battles in American history because the defense of Fort McHenry inspired Francis Scott Key to write his poem The Star Spangled Banner. However, if Rodger's land defenses had fallen, this poem would have become little more than a footnote in our history.
In 1817, the citizens of Baltimore presented Commodore Rodgers with a tremendous service of table silver in appreciation for his efforts during the war. Comprising approximately 50 pieces including platters, tureens, baskets, sauce boats, pitchers, covered servers and more, it is one of the finest American silver services ever made.
Today, many of these pieces are in museum collections. This platter descended in the family as a treasured heirloom.
It is inscribed on the back:
Presented by the Citizens of Baltimore to Com. John Rodgers in testimony of their sense of the important aid afforded by him in the defense of Baltimore on the 12th & 13th of Septr 1814.
Provenance: By descent in the family
Exhibition: Probably one of the pieces of the service displayed at the Maryland Historical Society in 1935.
This important platter measures 13.125 inches long by 10.25 inches wide and weighs 35.45 troy ounces. It is marked on the back in a circle 'FLETCHER & GARDINER.' and 'PHILA.' in a rectangle. It is in excellent antique condition with an old surface.
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