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19th Century Tiffany & Co. Pitcher. Circa 1871.
Sterling Silver is combination of silver (92.5%) and other types of medal like copper. The reason for the mix of other materials is that by itself silver is to soft to make objects that have a function like silverware, cups and pitchers. Copper is a good material and will give the silver strength to hold up under use. It also keeps the beauty of the silver intact.
Other materials sometimes used are germanium, zinc and platinum. These added materials help resist tarnish. Different combinations have been tried to improve Sterling Silver but copper is still the standard today.
The earliest use of Sterling Silver has been found in Northern Germany during the 12th century. The United States and Europe considered Sterling Silver as the proper material for flatware from 1840 to around 1940. It was considered inappropriate to use flatware made out of any other material. Now most silverware and dishes are made from cheaper materials that suit the table just fine unless you want a formal dinner and want to impress your guests.
On this page you will find a lot of Sterling Silver flatware, bullion, clay, coin, plate, marks, picture frame, spoons, watch or watches. Antique and vintage Sterling Silver also is available.
A few years ago I lived in a small mobile home that I rented with a friend. There was a big field nearby that I would explore for my exercise. Toward the middle I discovered a abandoned dumping place of odds and ends.
While walking around this garbage place I found several silver spoons, fork and other items. It seemed odd that someone would have thrown them away. It is fun to find garbage places from long ago. Another dumping place I found was small but there were several old metal toys like trucks and cars and it looked like no one else had discovered any of it yet. It looked as if I was the only one to have discovered. As the say goes someone else's garbage is someone's treasure.
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