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Salt Cellars

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Salt Cellars

Maker: Meriden Britannia Company (active Meriden, Connecticut, 1852-1898)

Date: c. 1885
Medium: Silver plate, gilt, and wood
Box Overall: 2 x 5 1/4 x 7 1/2in. (5.1 x 13.3 x 19.1cm)
Each: 1 1/4 x 1 13/16 x 1 1/8 in.
Markings: marked with Meriden Britannia stamp ion underside of each.
Credit Line: 75th Anniversary Acquisition. Museum Purchase
Object number: 2011.22.1-7
Label Text
Economic growth, along with developments in machine technology, made silver plate and sterling silver more affordable to middle class consumers. A complete, formal, matching silver service could consist of dozens of forms ranging from strawberry forks to salt spoons. An array of new eating utensils was introduced during the second half of the nineteenth century, often in response to new, fashionable foods. Individual salt dishes were used on formal table settings. A set such as this, still in its original box, may have been presented as a wedding or anniversary gift.