R. & W. Wilson 6-piece Antique Coin Silver Chinoiserie Coffee Service, Philadelphia, PA, c. 1840's
Consisting of a hot water urn, coffee pot, tea pot, covered sugar bowl, cream jug and waste bowl, this outstanding service is decorated with robust hand-chased floral and foliate repoussé work accentuated with die rolled bands of beading and rocaille work. Each piece rests on a circular pedestal foot with a Greek-key rim. The double-scroll handles are exceptionally cast featuring two roses under an acanthus leaf thumb piece.
The four superbly cast finials of Chinoiserie figures are indicative of the rare quality of this service.
The kettle rests on four additional wonderfully cast scrolling foliate feet.
Due to the cost of the silver needed to create such a large service (the total weight of this service is 184 troy ounces), 6-piece services from this period are rare. Whoever commissioned this set was obviously of significant means.
Robert and William Wilson are listed as working in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from 1825-1846 and according to Ian Quimby in American Silver at Winterthur, 'quickly became one of the most important manufacturers of fine silver in Philadelphia' (p.466). Significant works by the firm are featured in many museum collections.
This exceptional tea and coffee service is marked underneath each piece 'R & W WILSON'. The hot water urn measures 16 inches in height by 11.25 across the handles. The coffee pot measures 11.5 inches in height. The total weight of this service is an impressive 184 troy ounces. Each piece is monogrammed in a foliate script style on one side 'JRG'. It is in outstanding condition. (Although the hot water urn is missing the original iron insert used to retain heat.)
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