Thrift store silver!

gilgar

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I've always heard stories about people finding Sterling silver in thrift stores but I've never seen any in all my years of thrifting until today. About $450 melt worth for a little over 3 bucks. woohoo! Haven't checked yet if any might be worth more as actual silverware. (estimating weight on knives based on info from internet) Just mixed in with the usual piles of forks & knives I saw the color & started digging.
 

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traveller777

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I've always heard stories about people finding Sterling silver in thrift stores but I've never seen any in all my years of thrifting until today. About $450 melt worth for a little over 3 bucks. woohoo! Haven't checked yet if any might be worth more as actual silverware. (estimating weight on knives based on info from internet) Just mixed in with the usual piles of forks & knives I saw the color & started digging.
Great pick.
 

Red-Coat

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Gorham Sterling

That's great. It's Gorham's "Chantilly" pattern, designed by William C. Codman in 1895. For sure those will be worth more than melt. They look to be in lovely condition.

Chantilly.jpg

Chantilly was in production for a loooong time and unfortunately Gorham didn't use their date marking systems on small pieces of flatware. Whatever the age, there will be folks wanting to expand a set they already have, or looking to fill gaps in partial sets which have missing pieces.
 
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Rothman

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I have found plenty of "Sterling" ware in various thrift shops over the years. I have never found any that were actually solid sterling with the exception of a singular baby cup that was solid .925. Every piece I've seen was plated and mentioned the word "sterling" in some kind of context with other words that makes it ambiguous. I.E. "Sterling Mills" or the like. Yeah, says sterling but in reality, it's plated. Fingers crossed for you on these. Hope the research pans out in your favor!
 

Red-Coat

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View attachment 2011156 Would like to see the makers marks on all of these.
One mark that I can see on the knives looks an awful lot like STAINLESS.

Yes, it does. I didn't try zooming in to look for marks. No problem if that's what it says. It just means the pieces are later and - if they do actually say "Gorham Sterling" - then that refers to the knife handles being silver, not the blades.

Stainless steel became increasingly common for the knife blades on silver cutlery from the 1920s onwards. For Gorham's Chantilly, 1895 was the date for the pattern, not the production date. As I said, it was in production for a long time, and a lot of it was made in the 1950s.
 

Digger RJ

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I've always heard stories about people finding Sterling silver in thrift stores but I've never seen any in all my years of thrifting until today. About $450 melt worth for a little over 3 bucks. woohoo! Haven't checked yet if any might be worth more as actual silverware. (estimating weight on knives based on info from internet) Just mixed in with the usual piles of forks & knives I saw the color & started digging.
Score!!!! Very Nice!!! Congrats!!!
 
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I've always heard stories about people finding Sterling silver in thrift stores but I've never seen any in all my years of thrifting until today. About $450 melt worth for a little over 3 bucks. woohoo! Haven't checked yet if any might be worth more as actual silverware. (estimating weight on knives based on info from internet) Just mixed in with the usual piles of forks & knives I saw the color & started digging.
Sweet silver, congrats!
 

testing123

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View attachment 2011156 Would like to see the makers marks on all of these.
One mark that I can see on the knives looks an awful lot like STAINLESS.
It's common for sterling silver sets to have stainless blades and sterling handles. The fact that the blade is stainless doesn't necessarily mean the handle is as well. Now, a lot of these sterling handles are filled, so larger handles will average about 1/2 oz of silver per.
 

ajaj

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It's common for sterling silver sets to have stainless blades and sterling handles. The fact that the blade is stainless doesn't necessarily mean the handle is as well. Now, a lot of these sterling handles are filled, so larger handles will average about 1/2 oz of silver per.
Yes, many of the handles were filled with a cement-like substance with a thin layer of metal on the outside.
 
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gilgar

gilgar

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Yes, many of the handles were filled with a cement-like substance with a thin layer of metal on the outside.
yeah, blade is stainless and handle likely filled, pure silver handles are not common at all. I found a site that gave estimates for how much silver might be in knives.
 

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