Thursday, December 20, 2018

Christmas Cookies with the Princess Violet

Today we baked our Christmas Cookies ...I had the most adorable little helpers...

Doesn't she just match my kitchen perfectly??

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Oneida "Coronation" Community Plate Silverware ~who knew??

About 1848 John Humphrey Noyes and a little association of men began an experiment in communal living at Oneida Creek. 

Founded in 1848, and in operation for just over three decades, the Oneida Community was ahead of its time, paving the way for advances in women’s and workers’ rights. At the commune headquarters on the Oneida River in upstate New York, women cut their hair short, got rid of their corsets, and did the same work as the men. Everyone worked four to six hours a day, and no one had the need for any material possessions—not furniture, not fine clothing, and most of all... not silverware.

Most scandalously, commune members engaged in a system of “complex marriage,” believing that loving, open sexual relationships could bring them closer to God. They believed the liquid electricity of Jesus Christ’s spirit flowed through words and touch, and that a chain of sexual intercourse would create a spiritual battery so charged with God’s energy that the community would transcend into immortality, creating heaven on earth. Who knew this silverware had such a scandalous history???Wow...surely not I...

In 1877 the Oneida Community began the manufacture of tableware. The production of iron spoons called "Lily" and "Oval" manufactured by the Wallingford branch was the direct ancestor of the Community Plate line. 

The original poly amorous religious commune broke up in 1880 and reorganized its assets into a corporation.

In 1880 the activity was incorporated in New York as Oneida Community Limited and the factory was moved to Niagara Falls.

The first flatware Design Patterns were obtained by the company in 1881, but its production couldn't compete with higher quality silver made by other companies.

 In the 1890's, Oneida Community, Limited, started to drop its other products to focus on the cutlery market. For roughly 100 years, the silverware corporation—which was eventually renamed Oneida Limited—thrived under the leadership of the Community’s descendants.
Oneida decided to turn out to higher quality and better designed lined and the new pattern "Avalon" was exhibited at the 1901 Buffalo Exposition.

In 1902 the new line of Community Plate was introduced. The success was not immediate, but an innovative campaign of advertising in high-priced, large-circulation magazines proved greatly effective for the sales of Oneida silver and had a profound effect in the whole American advertising business.

In 1912-1914 the production plant moved from Niagara Falls to Sherrill, New York.

In 1926 a plant was opened in the UK (Kenwood Silver Company, Sheffield). In 1929 were bought Wm. A. Rogers Ltd 

 In 1935 the company changed its name to Oneida Ltd continuing the production of silver plate and sterling silverware in Sherrill, Oneida and Niagara Falls.

 In 1936 Oneida introduced a pattern named Coronation in its line of Community silver plate.

The Coronation pattern was introduced to commemorate the crowning of King Edward VIII in England (which never did happen). The flatware was also marketed in Canada and Great Britain, where it is known by the name Hampton Court.

The  carved fruit and floral shapes were inspired by the carvings of Grinling Gibbons at Hampton Court, you can see the Art Deco influence in the design of the handles.

These old patterns are getting more and more difficult to find in sets and will only become rarer as time goes on.I just could not pass them up at 25 cents a piece!!