This is an extremely fine and beautifully engraved, silver calling card case/purse by one of the most highly regarded silversmiths of the 19th century, Sampson Mordan. The case, with aquamarine blue moiré silk lining and compartments, the latter gilt-edged, and a working silver pencil, is hallmarked for sterling silver, London, 1877 and signed “S. Mordan & Co.”
The case carries the monogram “EFH,” and contains two original calling cards for “Mrs Charles W. Holyday.” Research of several censuses confirms that Ellen F. Holyday was married to Charles W. Holyday, living for a number of years in Lancashire.
This calling card case is contained within its original tooled morocco leather-covered presentation box, lined with ivory satin and midnight blue velvet. Both the calling card case and its box are in extremely good condition – very crisp overall.
The completeness and condition of this silver card case, coupled with its true beauty, make it a highly unusual, rare and extremely desirable item.
Sampson Mordan (1790-1843) was a highly regarded silversmith who, in his youth, was apprenticed to Joseph Bramah, the locksmith. Mordan, together with John Isaac Hawkins, invented the propelling pencil, registering the patent in 1822. Upon Mordan’s death in 1843, the company was inherited by two of his sons, Sampson Junior and Augustus, and the firm continued to flourish into the 20th century until the factory was destroyed in 1941 in the course of the Blitz.
Dimensions: Case 4¼” wide x 2¾” deep x ½” high, Box 5½” wide x 4¼” deep x ¾” high
Weight: approx 110g/3.9oz
Stock No: EP0314
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