In 1775 Jonathan Mappin started a small cutlery workshop in Sheffield. 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. The monarchs were so impressed by the excellence of the goods produced royal warrants followed. The name of this enterprise became synonymous with excellence and symbolizing the best of British.
Joseph, Jonathan’s son, followed him into the business. Joseph’s grandson, also called Joseph. But it was his four great grandsons, who incorporated the business as Mappin Brothers Ltd. in the mid 19th century that the huge growth of this enterprise began.
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.
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. At this time the business was focussing on manufacture based in Sheffield.
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.