Seaside and a Dresser Dish

Captain Cavedweller and I made a last-minute trip to the Oregon Coast recently. (When I say last minute, I mean he came home from work on a Thursday and said “I have time off next week. Let’s go somewhere.” And we left on Monday for our adventure.)

We decided to stay in Seaside. It’s a handy location between Tillamook and Astoria, and the place we stayed was only a block from their main street and a short walk to the beach. It was perfect!

The weather, surprisingly, was beautiful except for one rainy morning. We spent way too long wandering around an antique mall as we waited for the skies to clear.

I found a few treasures I had to bring home.

I’ve been on a quest for bud vases recently. The one on the right matches a dish set  I got from my grandma. The one on the left (the clear glass with the beautiful roses), Captain Cavedweller found and decided I had to bring home. I’m glad he’s decisive that way! 😉

The ewer, or pitcher, was just something pretty that tickled my fancy.

The little silver dish I paid a whole $2 for and thought it was unique.

I decided to try and clean it up a bit.

My go-to for cleaning silver (and it works great on brass too) is usually Weiman wipes if I’m just giving it a quick polish. For jobs that require a bit more work, I pull out the Wright’s Silver Polish.  After using one wipe and it coming away black, I decided to go for the polish from Wright’s.

As I cleaned one side of the tray, I decided to see if I could find more information about it.

I started by doing a search for similar items online and found this little dresser dish listed on ebay.

While the pattern is different, the size, style and fluted edges are very similar. It’s made by the Derby Silver company sometime between 1850-1899.

This is the bottom of my little dresser dish. It was made by the Middletown Plate Company. It’s silver plate. The 30 (I think) denotes the style or pattern. And I have no idea what the O.S. at the bottom means. If anyone has more info, I’d love to find out more!

According to what I could find, the Middletown Plate Company was started in 1864 by Edward Payne and Henry Bullard in Middletown, Connecticut. In 1899, Middletown Plate Company became part of the International Silver Company. The operation was moved to Meriden and merged with the Meriden Britannia Co.

The Middletown Plate Co. trademark was used by International Silver until 1921. Middletown Plate Company’s secondary trademark, Superior Silver Co., was used on a less expensive line by Wilcox Silver Plate Co. (an International Silver Co. division after 1898), until 1941 when World War II created a shortage of metal and the factory closed.

After the move  in 1899, former employees of the Middletown Plate Company, formed the Middletown Silver Plate Company. It lasted from 1899 to about 1910 when they claimed bankruptcy. After a reorganization, they managed to keep the company solvent until the last 1930s.

Anyway, once I found out this little $2 treasure was likely a dresser dish created sometime between 1864 and 1899, I decided not to get to rambunctious with my polishing.

The polishing I did sure brought out the details of the design, though. I love the pattern of birds, flowers, vines, and butterflies.

Again, if you have any info on the pattern, company, tips on polishing old silverplate pieces, or even what the piece was used for (I envision hairpins being dropped into the dish at the end of the day), I’d love to know more!

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2 Responses

  1. Shanna,
    I too have collected a variety of antiques for more than 50 years. I love the bud vases and the china Ewer. I have an entire set of milkglass and many other assorted pieces with the grape vine pattern. One of my favorites is a large water pitcher.

    Your Ewer with the rose pattern is beautiful and a very good find, the height itself making it a treasure.

    I am a huge collector of China and glass.

    I only have a few pieces of silver and unfortunately do not know much about it. However my silver book pretty much confirms the information that you found.

    Good luck, great adventures and much fun as you continue to collect through your adventures in antique malls, auctions, and maybe even flea markets.

    Isn’t it fun to share. Thank you for showing these treasures.

    1. Hi Jody!

      Oh, that is so neat you’ve been collecting antiques for half a century. Love that! The milkglass pieces are lovely! I have what my grandma called a “lemonade” set with a pitcher and glasses, along with a candy dish, all in the grape vine pattern.

      I loved the pattern on the ewer and it is in such good condition, too. Best part – it was on sale!

      It is so fun to share about these unique finds. I hope you come across more treasures to take home too!

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