This is an exceptionally rare bowl made by the short-lived partnership of Samuel L. Ward and Obadiah Rich. It is a beautiful bowl with lovely proportions in a classic shape. The square plinth base is attached to the gracefully curved column and bowl bearing an 'MAF' monogram.
The partnership of Ward & Rich dates from 1832-35. Little of their silver is known today, but they produced the most important piece of Boston made silver of their era - the Daniel Webster Vase.
The Webster Vase illustrated in Gleason's Pictorial Drawing-Room Companionis pictured below.
'On the 12th of October, 1835, the citizens of Boston presented Mr. Webster a massive silver vase in testimony of their gratitude for his services in defense of the Constitution against South Carolina-Nullification'.(1) 'The vase was placed on a pedestal covered with the American Flag, and contained on its front the following inscription: To Daniel Webster, defender of the Constitution of the United States; from the Citizens of Boston, Oct. 12, 1835'.(2)
Sold by the firm of Jones, Ball & Co. (predecessors to Shreve, Crump & Low), The vase was proudly displayed by them at the 1853 Crystal Palace Exhibition in New York City.(3)
This is the first time we have seen this very rare mark and the only extant piece of this important firms work that we are aware of other than the famous Webster Vase.
This rare bowl is marked on the side of the foot 'Ward & Rich/ Boston'. It is also marked underneath 'Ward & Rich/ Boston' with the date '1835'. It measures 7 inches in diameter by just under 5.5 inches high, weighs 15.25 troy ounces and is in excellent antique condition.
- Daniel Webster, Select Speeches of Daniel Webster, 1817-45, (DC Heath & Co, 1891), p. 386
- Daniel Webster, The Union Textbook Containing Selections of the Writings of Daniel Webster, (GG Evans, 1860), p. 228
- 'Jones, Ball & Co's Silver Ware' in Gleason's Pictorial Drawing Room Companion, September 1853, p. 153.