Gebelein Arts & Crafts Sterling Silver Large Gravy Boat, Boston, MA, c. 1920s
This is only the second gravy boat by Gebelein we have seen this size. The large proportions of this stunning gravy boat are quite beautiful and impressive. The hand-raised body has a lovely surface that shimmers with all the hammering from the silversmith's tools. Cast and applied feet raise the squat body. A wonderful handle with a thumb-piece incorporates scroll elements at both ends.
George Christian Gebelein was a seminal figure in the Boston arts & crafts movement, being one of only eight silversmiths to win the prestigious 'Medalist' award from the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts's highest honor for craftsmanship.
Having immigrated from Germany as a teenager, Gebelein apprenticed in Boston for Goodnow & Jenks. He was then employed in New York City by George W. Shiebler. Starting at the age of 19, Gebelein worked at Tiffany & Co. for a little over two years and then in 1900 moved to the firm of William B. Durgin in Concord, New Hampshire.
In 1903, he joined other artisans at the Boston Society of Arts and Crafts associated 'Handicraft Shop' in Wellesley Hills, MA. (1) Ultimately, in 1909, Gebelein opened his own shop at 79 Chestnut Street in the Beacon Hill neighborhood of Boston, where he continued to work for the rest of his life. (2)
This magnificent gravy boat is marked underneath "GEBELEIN/ STERLING/ Boston." It measures 8.25 inches across the handle and spout by 5 inches wide by 5.5 inches high to the top of the handle. It weighs an impressive 14.15 troy ounces, has never been engraved and is in excellent condition with light scratching to the interior from use. A copy of Margaretha Gebelein Leighton's book, George Christian Gebelein, Boston Silversmith, 1878-1945, accompanies this gravy boat.
Margaretha Gebelein Leighton, George Christian Gebelein, Boston Silversmith, 1878-1945, (Lunenburg, VT: The Stinehouse Press, 1976), pp. 12-33.
Leighton, p. 54-56.
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