Vaccination Policy

All visitors ages 12 and older must show proof of full vaccination against COVID-19. Visitors ages 5–11 must show proof of one dose. Read more >

Souvenir spoon

Object Number: 
2009.28.71
Date: 
ca. 1899
Medium: 
Silver
Dimensions: 
Overall: 5 7/8 x 1 1/4 x 5/8 in. (14.9 x 3.2 x 1.6 cm)
Marks: 
In relief: on reverse: "W" [in shield held by Chimera in square] / "STERLING" [in square]
Description: 
Sterling silver souvenir spoon; on obverse of handle, from finial to bowl, Seal of New York City, male figure in seventeenth-century Dutch clothing with long pipe seated on chair, and the words "NIEU AMSTERDAM" below; bowl plain; reverse with foliage; all in relief.
Gallery Label: 
This spoon is part of a collection of 407 New York-themed spoons donated by journalist and urban critic Roberta Brandes Gratz in 2009. During the 1880s, American travelers began collecting spoons in earnest as souvenirs of European cities. Anticipating a demand for American souvenir flatware, a few savvy U.S. manufacturers began patenting designs around 1889. New York City subjects appeared on spoons almost immediately. Gorham became the first major factory to produce New York City spoons, joining the craze in 1891. By 1893, Tiffany & Co. offered eighteen different souvenir spoons featuring New York City landmarks at prices ranging from $2 to $5.
Credit Line: 
Gift of Roberta Gratz
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group