TOBACCONISTS - PIPE MANUFACTURERS - PIPE MOUNTERS
A pipe for tobacco smoking typically consists of a small chamber (the bowl) for the combustion of
the tobacco to be smoked and a thin stem (shank) that ends in a mouthpiece (the bit).
The stem needs a long channel of constant position and diameter running through it, and this is difficult
to carve out of a pre-existing block. Because it is molded rather than carved, clay may make up the
entire pipe or just the bowl, but most other materials have stems made separately and detachable.
Often a silver band is used to connect the bowl to the detachable stem. In the UK, sterling silver spigots
(or ferrules) bear Assay Office's hallmarks which allow to date the pipes and obtain information
about their maker, mounter or importer.
In most cases these objects weren't presented to hallmarking by silversmiths but by importers, retailers
and pipe mounters who were identified in Assay Office's ledgers as "tobacconists",
"pipe makers" or "pipe mounters".
The tobacconist is an expert dealer in tobacco in various forms and related accessories as
pipes, lighters, matches, pipe cleaners, pipe tampers, ashtrays, cigar cutters or "novelties".
PIPES, TOBACCO, CIGARS AND FANCY GOODS IMPORTERS
IN BRITISH ASSAY OFFICES
MAKER'S AND SPONSOR'S MARK: U
BIR=Birmingham CHE=Chester DUB=Dublin LON=London
UL into an oval
George Henry LAKE Charles WHITE trading as U. LAKE - Liverpool
This is a page of 'The What is? Silver Dictionary' of A Small Collection of
Antique Silver and Objects of vertu, a 1500 pages richly illustrated website offering all you need to know about
antique silver, sterling silver, silverplate, Sheffield plate, electroplate silver,
silverware, flatware, tea services and tea complements, marks and hallmarks, articles,
books, auction catalogs, famous silversmiths (Tiffany, Gorham, Jensen, Elkington),
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