Silver Spoons

  • Artifact:

    Silver spoons made by John Bernard Woltz

  • Time Period:

    Unknown, but possibly around 1810, when Woltz was known to be living in Shepherdstown.

  • Description:

    Because raw materials were not readily available, silverware was often made from melted down coins — “silver coin” referred to silver made from coins and containing about 10% copper to strengthen it. John Woltz was also a clockmaker, and one of his clocks is in the Museum. According to Eric Jenkins, an expert on silver made in this area, “Clocks had a very limited market because they were made primarily for the wealthy.  The maker therefore had to diversify to make ends meet.  Things like silver spoons, though still a high priced item, were given as wedding gifts or for other special occasions and had a slightly larger market.” Read more in the Historic Shepherdstown & Museum blog.

  • Benefactor:

    Purchased by Historic Shepherdstown & Museum