About Mappin & Webb Antiques And Illustrated Timeline

About Mappin & Webb Antiques And Illustrated Timeline

 

MAPPIN & WEBB ROYAL CUTLERY AND PLATE WORKS SHEFFIELD

In 1775 Jonathan Mappin started a small cutlery workshop in Sheffield, which grew into a huge manufacturing concern, as you can see from the image above. Within a year the first Mappin hallmark was recorded at the assay office. In 1780 Jonathan Mappin was given the Freedom of the Cutlers Company. As you can see from the image above this became a hugely successful concern. The company expanded internationally and received royal commissions from all over the world. Monarchs were so impressed by the excellence of the goods produced that royal warrants followed. 

The name of this enterprise became synonymous with excellence and their wares symbolized the best of British.

Such were the achievements of this prestigious jeweller that we have included an illustrated timeline at the bottom of this page.

The Royal Cutlery & Silver Plate works were situated on Norfolk Street, Sheffield. The melting furnaces, rolling mills, hammer shops, steam-stamp shops, grinding wheels and forging hearths ensured that the firm could control the whole manufacturing process. The cutlery / flatware would be finished by  silversmiths and cutlers, who would add intricate engravings, chasing and fluting to all manner of tableware and accessories. Buffing of cutlery was also done by using machinery. This was especially hard and dangerous work, as the spoons or items which required buffing would get very hot and the workers, who were usually women, would bind their fingers so they could bear the intense heat. If the bindings came away from the fingers and got caught in the machinery this could cause serious or fatal accidents. 

Items that required gold or silver plating would be sent to the plating room which contained some of the largest cast-iron vats in the world.

Joseph, Jonathan’s son, followed him into the business. Joseph’s grandson, also called Joseph did so too. But it was his four great grandsons who were responsible for the huge growth of this enterprise in the mid nineteenth century. These gentlemen incorporated the business which became known as Mappin Brothers Ltd. 

In 1849 the first London based showroom opened on 17 Fore Street and shortly afterwards the eldest brother was knighted and became Sir William Mappin and as the business grew the brothers began to take a different path.

                 

Capture.PNG

Image From 1902 Catalogue 

Sir William Mappin left the firm in 1859 and became the senior partner at the Thomas Turton & Sons’ steel mill and gave his share of the company to the other three brothers. In 1860, the youngest brother broke away from Mappin Brothers and started his own business Mappin & Company.  In 1862 he was joined by his brother in law George Webb. George Webb’s name was included in the company name from 1864, it was only in 1868 that Mappin and Webb & Co. was formed. Unfortunately, George Webb died in 1868. The name of Mappin & Webb Ltd. was recorded in 1889.

QUEEN VICTORIA'S GOLDEN JUBILEE NECKLACE 

 In order to celebrate Queen Victoria’s Golden Jubilee in 1887, a committee of ladies was formed to raise money for a commemorative statue of Victoria’s late husband, Prince Albert. The committee was so successful that they raised far more than was required. The committee and Queen Victoria agreed that the excess funds should go to the St. Katherine’s Fund for Nurses. However, some members of the committee decided that a portion of the funds should be used to purchase a necklace for the Queen.

Mappin & Webb were the jewellers chosen to create this celebrated piece.

THE ILLUSTRATED SPORTING AND DRAMATIC NEWS 1890

The advertisement shows some of the huge range of -

MAPPIN & WEBB'S ARTISTIC AND USEFUL XMAS PRESENTS

Top row - a cased silver plated brush set, a clock and compass set framed by horseshoes with crossed hunting crops set atop and a sewing set.

Next row - leather bound book, a cased grooming set, a sewing set, and a barometer. 

Next row - wallets, a cased scissor set, a cheroot case and purses.

Second from bottom row - a leather purse with clock, hip flasks, enamelled cases in a presentation box.

Bottom row - opera glasses, a vesta case, candlesticks, a boxed brush set

 

THE ILLUSTRATED LONDON NEWS 1892

MAPPIN & WEBB'S

XMAS GIFTS

IN

STERLING SILVER &

PRINCE'S PLATE

Prince's plate involved a triple layer of silver on the firm's silver plated wares. This process ensured that their Prince's plate pieces had a much more durable finish that was less prone to wear.

The advertisement above shows a wide variety of elegant cased condiment, serving and flatware sets.

Mappin & Webb received its first Royal Warrant as silversmiths to Queen Victoria in 1897.

They have continued to hold Royal Warrants as Silversmiths to each of the five subsequent monarchs.

                              Capture.PNG

QUEEN VICTORIA WEARING THE GOLDEN JUBILEE NECKLACE

 

 

QUEEN ELIZABETH II WEARING THE GOLDEN JUBILEE NECKLACE



Capture.PNG

Queen Victoria granted a royal warrant to Mappin & Webb in 1897, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.  



Capture.PNG

 MAPPIN & WEBB QUEEN VICTORIA STREET LONDON SHOWROOM

 MAPPIN & WEBB 1901 ADVERTISEMENT

Mappin & Webb's PRESENTATION STERLING SILVER PLATE

Chairman J NEWTON MAPPIN

SELECTIONS SENT ON APPROVAL

SPECIAL DESIGNS & ESTIMATES FREE

The public supplied by Actual Makers at Manufacturers' 

Wholesale Cash Prices, 

saving all intermediate Profits.

WEST END 158 - 162 OXFORD STREET.

CITY - 2 QUEEN VICTORIA ST. LONDON EC.

SHEFFIELD - The Royal Works.

MANCHESTER - St. Anne's Square.

JOHANNESBURG - Von Brandis Square.

                                

Capture.PNG

 MAPPIN & WEBB JEWELLERY DESIGNS

In 1900s the Siamese royal family commissioned Mappin & Webb to make pieces for them. These ranged from jewellery for young princes, to senior members of the royal family. The Queen of Siam was so impressed with this work she commissioned Mappin & Webb to create Art Deco jewellery in the 1920s.

 

Capture.PNG

Mappin & Webb are one of the most prestigious British jewellers & command huge prices for their jewellery and luxurious accessories.

MAPPIN & WEBB STAFF PACKING CUTLERY

© Crown Copyright

The workers shown above are fulfilling an order placed by the Indian government. The cutlery is in the Louis style, referring to the style of the French Kings.

Mappin & Webb jewellery, cutlery & accessories are quite simply fit for a king or a queen.

                                                              

EDWARDIAN MAPPIN & WEBB STERLING VESTA CASE

                             

The case still has the original hanging ring, as it would have been worn on an Albert chain. It is superbly made. Each side has a bold engine turned linear design. 

                              

FINELY EXECUTED FLEUR-DE-LIS
A unique high quality powder bowl in the original presentation box, commissioned by Mappin & Webb in 1922. This powder well of this superb antique powder compact is signed "MAPPIN & WEBB LTD". The beautiful lid has the most gorgeous and subtle cream guilloche enamel which is without losses or fading. The enamel is an even colour. Set top, an impressive lapis lazuli cabochon

MAPPIN & WEBB SIMPLETTE POWDER COMPACT

This fabulous signed sterling silver Art Deco Mappin & Webb powder compact combines the most stylish era in history with the Mappin & Webb reputation for elegance. This piece is extremely rare and not one we have seen before. The vermeil powder well is signed 'MAPPIN & WEBB LTD LONDON'. The hallmarks are clear and unworn. It is easy to see the maker's mark, Birmingham Assay, date year L (1935) and also the rare hallmark commemorating the Silver Jubilee of King George V.   

The whole compact is decorated with a complex engine turned design which prevents the appearance of fingerprints. The lid is engraved with the classic Art Deco motifs of three highly stylized skyscrapers.

 GUILLOCHE ENAMEL & HALLMARKED SILVER COMPACT

A superb Mappin & Webb sterling silver loose and pressed foundation powder compact, which was crafted in 1969. This exquisitely beautiful fully hallmarked sterling silver and guilloche enamel compact mirror is decorated with the most quintessentially English hand painted floral bouquet. Red, pink & yellow poppies interspersed with golden ears of wheat in colours as vibrant as the day they were painted! 

 MARKS OF THE FIRM

BIRMINGHAM 1909  

BIRMINGHAM 1935 KING GEORGE V SILVER JUBILEE MARK     

BIRMINGHAM 1969

You can find out more on the history behind this iconic jeweller in our fact packs that come with every order - shop Mappin & Webb gifts here.

Timeline:

1775 Mappin & Webb is founded by Jonathon Mappin.

1860 The first Mappin & Webb store opens in London at 77/78 Oxford Street.

1897 Queen Victoria granted the firm a Royal Warrant to the firm.

1899 The Russian Imperial Household granted Mappin & Webb a Royal Warrant.

MAPPIN & WEBB BUENOS AIRES C.1910

1902 - 1932 Mappin & Webb showrooms opened in Buenos Aires, Paris, Lausanne, Nice, Vichy, Rome, Cairo, Shanghai and Biarritz, Hong Kong and Bombay.

1904 The Maharaja Raj Rama Bhawaur Singh commissioned a silver bedroom set, including a four-poster bed and a dressing table set.
 
1914 MAPPIN CAMPAIGN ADVERTISEMENT
Watchmakers to The Admiralty
Mappin's Famed 
'Campaign'  Watch
This fine wristlet watch was
first used in great numbers at Omdurman,
And dessert-experience is the severest test
a watch can have.
During the last Boer War it renewed its
high reputation for reliability under trying
conditions.
It is compensated and jewelled. In silver
case with stout inner dome, it is absolutely
dust and damp proof.
It is fitted with a luminous dial, which
shows the time on the blackest of nights.
£2:10:0
Mappin & Webb Ltd
Silversmiths to his Majesty King George V
158 - 162 Oxford St., W. 2 Queen Victoria St., E.C.
220 Regent St., London, W.
Royal Works - Sheffield.
                                                                                                                       
1914 Mappin & Webb supplies watches to the Admiralty. The Campaign Watch was available in stainless steel for £2:10:0 and also a luxurious version crafted from 9 ct gold. The advertisement below dates to the 1930s and shows that the stainless steel watch was retailing for £2:15:0 and the 9ct gold model was priced at £6:15:0.
1915 The firm's huge Sheffield factory was given over to manufacture parts & supplies for the war effort.
1918                                                                                       
DIRECTORY OF MANUFACTURERS IN ENGINEERING & ALLIED TRADES
                                                                                                                 
During World War I the company helped in the war effort by manufacturing:          
Copper shell bands, 3-inch Stokes' bombs. Sterilising boxes. Primer bodies. Fuze noses. Tin-plate covers. Covers for No.80 fuze. 4-inch W.P. bombs. Shrapnel discs.                                                                                                        
As you would expect during this time, the female workforce outnumbered the men. Two hundred and sixty one females and two hundred and nineteen male employees were working at the Norfolk Street factory in 1918.                                
The work listed for the firm prior to WWI was:                                                         
Cutlers and silversmiths. Designers. Hotel and steamship contractors. Electroplate and cutlery for W.O., Adm., and export.
W.O. is the War Office and Adm. is the Admiralty.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
1930s During this decade the firm's principal work was supplying hotels, restaurants and steamships with luxurious cutlery and tableware.    
   
               1 RUE DE LA PAIX PARIS                  
                                                                                          
1939 The Mappin & Webb boutique in Paris was ceased by the Nazis.                        
MAPPIN & WEBB ADVERTISEMENT
© Pratt Institute
20th Century Stencil Work 
Service á thé en argent de Mappin & Webb (France) Ltd
BILJOUTERIE -- ORFÉVRERIE   
1 Rue de la Paix
PARIS
LONDRES - BIARRITZ - NICE - MONTE-CARLO
                         
During World War II (1 September 1939 - 2 September 1945) Mappin & Webb supplied the army with cutlery and all the war work undertaken in WWI recommenced in their factories. 
1951 The company is invited to exhibit at The Festival of Britain.
QUEEN ELIZABETH II WEARING MAPPIN & WEBB
© Tim Graham/ Getty Images

The fabulous necklace shown above was crafted by Mappin & Webb in Rio de Janiero. The aquamarine stones are set in platinum and diamond mounts. This splendid piece was a gift from the President of Brazil for the Queen’s Coronation in 1953. A pair of matching earrings were also included.

It took Mappin & Webb a year to find perfectly matched aquamarine stones from Brazilian mines. 

1958 Queen Elizabeth was presented with a matching bracelet and brooch.    

1960 Winston Churchill commissioned pocket watches and solid gold ashtrays.                                            

1963 Mappin & Webb merged with Elkington and Walker & Hall. This company was named British Silverware Ltd.                                                                           
1973 Mappin & Webb was bought by Sears Holdings.                                            
1980 Granted a Royal warrant as Silversmiths to His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales.
 
1980s the firm was acquired by Asprey & Co.                                                         
1998 Asprey & Co. merged with Garrard & Co.                                                       
1998 Asprey & Garrard sold Mappin & Webb and Watches of Switzerland for approximately £40 million to a team headed by Judith Pilkington, who was the managing director of Mappin & Webb at the time, having been recruited from the luxury department store Harrods.

 

In 2012 Martin Swift who is one of the craftsmen at Mappin & Webb was also appointed The Crown Jeweller.

The firm's association with royalty continues to this day.

MAPPIN & WEBB ORCHID BROOCH

© Mappin & Webb

2014 On April 8 Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Philip hosted the first Irish state visit to Britain. President Michael D Higgins and his wife Mrs Sabina Higgins travelled to Windsor Castle. During this visit the Queen wore the Mappin & Webb orchid brooch, which is shown in the photo above. This brooch was a gift from the Crown Jeweller, Martin Swift & Mappin Webb in collaboration with Waterford Crystal. The flowers are hand cut Waterford Crystal. In the middle are rose gold stamens set with 66 diamonds. 

Waterford glassworks have Irish origins which date to the 18th century.

The President of Ireland also attended meetings with the British Prime Minister, David Cameron, the Mayor of London and leaders of the opposition parties at Westminster Palace.

2015 Mappin & Webb was engaged by the 1st Battalion Grenadier Guards to craft a silver statue of the Duke of Wellington to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo.

2016 CAMPAIGN WATCH

© Mappin & Webb

2016 sees the re-issue of the Campaign Watch. 

 

Sources:

Mappin & Webb

wikipedia

silvercollection.it

Pratt Institute