George Sharp for Bailey & Co: The Samuel M. Felton 'Medallion' Sterling Silver Swing-handled Cake Basket, c. 1865
This wonderful basket features four cast and applied medallions around the shaped edge and four repoussed neoclassical medallions on a stippled background with acanthus based fluid foliate scrolls in the basket. Anthemion leaves deorate the chased base. The swing handle has beading centering a bold cast medallion.
It measures 13 inches long by 10.5 inches wide, is 10.25 inches high with the handle elevated and weighs 38.25 troy ounces. It is marked with the 'lion, "S", shield' trademark that Bailey & Co. used on their sterling silver, another lion passant mark and 'BAILEY & CO CHESTNUT ST PHILA'. It is monogrammed 'S.M.F.' in an Old English style in the center.
George Sharp had been Bailey & Co.'s silver shop foreman until he started his own business in 1861, when Bailey discontinued the in-house manufacture of silver. Bailey continued to order silver from Sharp and the Felton pieces bear Bailey & Co.'s marks, indicating that Sharp continued to use the Bailey marks on Bailey retailed silver even after starting his own shop.