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Determining the Value of a Silver Tray

September 15, 2021

Three faces engraved on a small silver tray.As a child I collected miniature antiques. I have had this tray since ~1972. Was purchased at a local antique shop in Mullica Hill NJ. It is silver and engraved with three boys faces. Wondering what is its value. I'm downsizing and am looking to sell my miniatures.

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Three faces engraved on a small silver tray.
 

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Silver Answer Medal for All Time! 320 Answers
September 15, 20210 found this helpful
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Here is a similar, called a tip tray. Appears to be very valuable. Please consider donating this item to a museum or other institution whose mission is to preserve and educate about Black history. www.icollect247.com/.../1124_1614105254A.jpg

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
September 16, 20210 found this helpful
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First--do NOT clean it or do anything to it until you get a lot more info in hand so you don't do any damage or if it is of value, decrease the value or damage it. You mention that you cleaned it in the past...but I would not do anything until you get more info.

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There is not enough information about this item to offer you value or what to do with it--yet.

Is it marked sterling or 925 or any of the other markings defining it clearly as silver? From the photo it does have some tarnish, but other metals age like that...so the material is critical to the value. It could be pressed tin or silver plate that has aged--which would have a totally different value than if it is indeed sterling silver.

Is there a brand or a maker mark on the back or it could even be very tiny in the design...I can't get it blown up enough to see if has any marking on the front and there is not a picture of the back (unless I missed it).

That is the first two passes at understanding what you have.

Third pass is once you confirm the actual metal, then you go to subject matter. Black History pieces can have significant value or not--depending on the subject matter and the condition of the piece. I did a few quick searches and only found the one that another poster shared--but it is possible I am just not searching the right terms. I will try to do some further digging and see what terms I have missed.

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That sample has a crazy high dollar amount and, to me, that is only indicative of what one seller thinks...and as a life long re-seller, I can tell you in all honesty that sellers can say anything they want and call things "rare" and set a crazy high asking price...since we have no examples of the EXACT one being sold, I hold that example as just that...an example until there are more facts.

I am hoping you do have a rare and valuable piece--but again--this needs a ton more info to figure that out.

If you want to go expert route and ask...sadly a lot of the museums are closed or have limited staffing and hours.

You could try asking at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture. They seem to still be open. Here is their website and contact info:

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nmaahc.si.edu/

Open Wednesday through Sunday
10:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

The museum is closed to the public on Monday and Tuesday each week.

1400 Constitution Ave NW
Washington, DC 20560
Ph. 1-844-750-3012

When inquiring, you can tell them you are downsizing and that you want to get your collection into good hands. That you find this piece interesting and wanted to see if it was something they would be interested in for their collection.

Never discuss "value" with a museum...because they find that question offensive and don't want to deal with someone selling off collectibles for a profit.

Don't point out that crazy high asking prices that is an example--especially because it is not an exact match.

Museums are all about apples to apples comparsions...so the one online may truly be worth what the person is asking and because yours is different it could either be worthless, of the same value, or worth even MORE than theirs.

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If this museum can't help, ask if they know of one that may be better suited (that are still open).

Let them do the talking and see what they say!

Post back what you learn so we all can learn from it!!

Thanks for sharing.

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24 More Questions

Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

July 22, 2022

Can anyone tell me if these are worth anything of value? I'm downsizing and moving from a house to an apartment soon. The longer plate had a marking on it saying "Leonard Silverplate".

And the circluler one has a "QUEEN CITY" marking on it.

A rectangular silver tray.
 
A round silver tray.
 
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April 7, 2022

Can anyone give me any information on the age or value of my grandmother's International Silver Co. serving tray? It's been in storage down here in South Texas for about 25 years. In pretty good condition. I also have old China that was hers for as long as my mother can remember.A round silver serving tray.

 

She is 70 yrs old. Perfect condition.

The side of a silver serving tray.
 
A round silver serving tray.
 
A round silver serving tray.
 
A round silver serving tray.
 
The side of a silver serving tray.
 
The bottom of a silver serving tray.
 
The bottom of a silver serving tray.
 

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
April 11, 20220 found this helpful
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It's sad to see lovely things that were bought and treasured many years ago become of such low value.
This type of item is not usually on very many people's 'wanted' lists but they do still sell.

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You do not state the size and of course, the size, weight, and condition all affect the final value.
The high cost of shipping is becoming a major factor in the final value of items like this.

You can look at similar trays in the same size and maybe get some idea of value. The prices you see are asking prices and only a sold identical item can tell you the value.
vatican.com/.../

You can also check out sold items on eBay to see what people are actually paying for trays.
www.ebay.com/.../i.html?_from=R40&_nkw=international...

When I have items like this, I usually take them to a local pawn shop and see what (or if) they would pay me for the item.
This can provide some information but they may only value it at 20% of the true value but they usually can provide information about age and silver content.

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November 1, 2019

I own a sterling silver platter that was left to me by my great grandmother. I know that it is sterling as it is marked so as well as having the mark for Washbourne, Graff & Dunn.

It is also stamped with the numbers 8552/236. It is 15 inches and very heavy. I'm hoping to find the name of the pattern and the value of it.Value and Pattern Name for a Sterling Silver Tray - tray propped up on a counter
 

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 168 Feedbacks
November 1, 20190 found this helpful
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I did a quick research on Graff Washbourne & Dunn and learned they began silver pieces early 18th Century....so, your piece has a very old patina in comparing other pics of their work...I would suggest you do an online search for silver appraisals and send them a photo of yours. I saw a plate/platter similar to yours that has French influences; just a bit more decorative, but has the same motif as yours does. Good Luck in your researching.

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
November 2, 20190 found this helpful
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If you are asking to get a pattern name, the numbers you have are the pattern. These pieces did not always come with other matching pieces...like dishes do, so if you are asking to try to by more pieces it is going to be a matter of search by the brand and the look to see if they made anything else that goes with it. Often they just made the trays since serving platters were quite popular in the early 20th century.

If you are asking for value to sell it, in probably 90% of my dealings with silver items, if it is sterling the value for scrap is typically more than the value for resale.

This website talks about your exact platter (from 2012) www.justanswer.com/.../74rpb-15-inch-sterling-platter-graff...

I would not use the values from then as silver values change daily, but it is in interesting assessment.

You can get an estimate of what it would sell for scrap by taking nit to a place like Treasure Hunt or a place that their only business is to buy gold/silver. OR, if you have a good jewelry store (not one like Kay's or that sell mass produced jewelry--but to either a family owned one or one that specializes in custom pieces you can see if they will give you scrap value. I suggest getting up to 3 bids, then try to list it on eBay at twice that and see if you get any nibbles. (Avoid pawn shops for the bidding process.)

I only suggest eBay ONLY if you are an experienced seller. If you are not an experienced seller, I don't suggest an online sale (too much chance for fraud that plagues new sellers).

Then I would suggest taking it to an antique dealer and having them consign it for you (if they think they can get you a value higher than scrap.)

Post back what you decide!

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March 1, 2022

Hi, I just purchased this beautiful silver tray from an antique store, and while researching it, it seems that it may be more valuable than what I paid. However with the stamp only stating FB Rogers Im not sure that it is more valuable. Can someone help?

A silver tray
 
The manufacturer's marking on the back of a silver tray.
 

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September 10, 2020

Hello Friends, I have this silver tray from my parents. I've searched online for the engraving with no luck. Has anyone ever seen this before? Thanks in advance.

A silver tray with handles.
 
A silver tray on a white surface.
 
The marking on the back of a silver tray.
 

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
September 10, 20200 found this helpful
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It took some time to identify the mark on the back of your silver but I finally found it. There is a guide to all types of silver marking and I was not sure where this one was from. It gives you all the marks from around the world and by each country. I found your mark and it was made by Forbes Silver Company. The division of the company that created these silver items was founded in 1894 as part of the Meriden Britannia Co. and this trademark was used until 1935. The company was located in Meriden CT in the USA. This is not pure silver but silver plate. You can find the silver plate mark on this page. www.925-1000.com/silverplate_F.html

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Gold Feedback Medal for All Time! 949 Feedbacks
September 10, 20200 found this helpful
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Well Poehere did all the work at finding the information about your tray but there is a Forbes Silver forum if you would like to ask further questions:

www.silver-collector.com/.../10043

Looks like Forbes only made silver plate so that question is answered.

You did not ask about value but usually that is the reason most people are asking questions about an item.
Here is a little information just in case you wanted to know about value.

eBay has several listings of different types of Forbes silver but a few trays also can be found.
Asking prices are only what a seller would like to receive for their items but only a sold identical item shows current value.

www.ebay.com/.../bn_7024792482

Here is a link to eBay's sold listings so you can get an idea as to what people are actually paying for similar items.

It is sad but most pawn shops will not buy silver plate either to melt or to sell.

www.ebay.com/.../i.html?_nkw=forbes+silver+co&rt=nc...

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November 17, 2020

I have a tray stamped silver by Boardman 1110. How much is it worth?

A silver tray with a leaf pattern in the center.
 

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
November 17, 20200 found this helpful
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Can you please show the stamp?

Boardman does make sterling silver pieces (stamped Sterling or 925 typically) but they also make silver plated and pewter. It is hard to tell from the photo what you have, and I don't know of a mark they use just called silver.

If it is Sterling will be much higher than plated or pewter.

Thanks!

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January 25, 2020

I have a silver serving tray, and need to know how much it's worth.

Value of a Silver Serving Tray
 

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Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
January 27, 20200 found this helpful
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In order to know the value of the tray there should be some marks on the tray to help out. They are normally on the back of the tray. You can also visit a jewelry store to have the tray weighted to determine how much silver is in the tray. The store owner should be able to give you a price or value of this item.

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December 9, 2019

I have had no luck on eBay or company websites since, they seemed to have closed back in 1958. Can you help find its value?

Value of A Silver Tray - silver tray with ornate edge and handles
 
Value of A Silver Tray
 
Value of A Silver Tray
 
Value of A Silver Tray
 
Value of A Silver Tray
 

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Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
December 10, 20190 found this helpful
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Hi! Thanks for sharing. You have a Lawrence B. Smith Co waiter tray. Not sure the exact vintage--probably 1940s or 1950s. I can't tell if it is footed or not from the photo. It looks to be and some of those still command value.

Replacements.com can tell you exactly which one you have or you can search through their database on your own (put Lawrence B. Smith co waiter tray in your search).

Their asking price will be the retail value (like if you had a store or were a business). If you sell it to them or own your own--either to them or online, you can expect much less than that value.

I think it is hollow-ware silver plated, but I am not positive--There are a number of varieties of these and without knowing the exact measurements and if it is footed or not, I don't want to guess. Usually Sterling is marked, but not always.

Yours looks to be in nice shape so that will bode well for a sale.

Post back what you learn! Thanks for sharing.

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