Rogers Smith Company Silver Plate Vanity Mirror, ca. 1875

Value (2007) | $4,000 Auction$6,000 Auction
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GUEST:
I had neighbors who were antique collectors, and they were in Canada one time, in an antique store, and their daughter found it hanging on a wall in the back. And it was all dusty. They bought it. I think they paid between $15 and $25 -- it wasn't very much -- and it hung on their living room wall for 40 years.

APPRAISER:
Okay.

GUEST:
And then he passed away, and she had to go to an assisted living, and it came to live at my house.

APPRAISER:
Wonderful. And that's about all you know about it?

GUEST:
Well, the thieves didn't take it when they broke into her house and took all the rest of her silver.

APPRAISER:
Well, let me tell you a little bit about it.

GUEST:
Okay.

APPRAISER:
It is a fold-out vanity. It's made by the Rogers Smith Company, based out of Connecticut. And it is actually made of silver plate.

GUEST:
It's silver-plated. Okay.

APPRAISER:
They were one of the most prominent manufacturers of American silver plate at the end of the 19th century. It dates from about 1880, 1870 -- the height of the

Aesthetic Movement.

GUEST:
Oh. Okay.

APPRAISER:
And, as you can see here, with this decoration, you have this wonderful sort of influence of Japanese decoration surrounding the frame. But then you also have this fabulous pierce decoration which is matched on all four corners. You have the sides which swing out, and there's also loop handles which it can hang from. Also, you have this wonderful little element -- and I'll just spin this around. And it's decorated with flowers on the reverse, which is a very nice element. When it comes to cleaning of this, don't polish it or anything.

GUEST:
Don't polish it.

APPRAISER:
Just lightly dust it. Because it's silver-plated -- it's already lost some of it -- you can see someone really cleaned the heck out of it here, and so it's gone down to its brassy finish. Do you have any idea of the value on this piece?

GUEST:
I was told maybe $2,000-$3,000 but...

APPRAISER:
Okay. Well, I think, in the right type of sale, it could have an auction estimate of about $4,000 to $6,000.

GUEST:
Oh. Okay.

APPRAISER:
It is a very, very, very nice example of American Aesthetic Movement silver plate.

GUEST:
Well, cool.

APPRAISER:
And thanks for coming to the ROADSHOW.

GUEST:
Thanks.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
Rago Arts & Auction Center
Lambertville, New Jersey
Appraised value (2007)
$4,000 Auction$6,000 Auction
Event
Spokane, WA (August 04, 2007)
Form
Mirror
Material
Silver

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