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Object Name: Spoon
Date: 1896-1940
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Medium: Silver
Dimensions: Overall: 6 x 1 1/8 x 5/8 in. (15.2 x 2.9 x 1.6 cm)
Description: Sterling silver souvenir spoon; on obverse of wavy handle, finial to bowl, triumphal arch labeled “COLUMBUS” and the words “NEW YORK”, all in relief; bowl plain; reverse engraved with initials “B.M.P.”
Credit Line: Gift of Roberta Gratz
Object Number: 2009.28.14
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Marks: Stamped on reverse: "W" [in circle with 3 radiating marks on either side] "STERLING"

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This spoon is part of a collection of 407 New York-themed spoons donated by journalist and urban critic Roberta Brandes Gratz in 2009. During the 1880s, American travelers began collecting spoons in earnest as souvenirs of European cities. Anticipating a demand for American souvenir flatware, a few savvy U.S. manufacturers began patenting designs around 1889. New York City subjects appeared on spoons almost immediately. Gorham became the first major factory to produce New York City spoons, joining the craze in 1891. By 1893, Tiffany & Co. offered eighteen different souvenir spoons featuring New York City landmarks at prices ranging from $2 to $5.