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Tea service (4 pc.)

Object Number: 
1911.37a-e
Date: 
1795-1797
Medium: 
Silver, wood
Dimensions: 
Overall: 7 3/4 x 13 x 5 in. (19.7 x 33 x 12.7 cm)
Marks: 
engraved: in reserves on one side: "M B" in bright-cut script Engraving: in reserves on opposite side: Beekman family crest: shield with wavy bend between two roses, bird's head in upper right, surmounted with two wings addorsed stamped: on bases: "W. G
Description: 
Silver tea service consisting of a teapot, sugar bowl with lid, creamer and waste bowl; seamed bodies, oval in plan, with convex sides, die-rolled decorative bands inset between main bodies and concave upper bodies with plain rims; engraved foliate bands, below the die-rolled bands; applied, oval footrings with die-rolled decorative bands; raised lids, oval in plan, flat at rims with decorative die-rolled bands, rising in centers to applied domed platforms surmounted by cast urn finials; wooden loop handle on the teapot, silver squared strap handles on the creamer and sugar bowl; garlanded reserves on both sides of each with the Beekman family crest, a shield with a wavy bend between two roses, and a bird's head in upper right, surmounted with two wings addorsed, in one and the bright-cut initials, "M B" in the other; maker's mark stamped on the bases.
Gallery Label: 
This four-piece tea set was retailed by William Garret Forbes, a prolific silversmith active from 1773 to 1809. In addition to Forbes's name clearly stamped on the underside of the vessels, three of the four pieces bear additional marks of a wheat sheaf and an eagle's head, which indicate the work of Teunis D. DuBois and Joseph DuBois, respectively. The brothers became partners in June 1795 and produced silver both for their own customers and for retailers. Surviving account books kept by Teunis confirm that he maintained a thriving business on his own after 1797 providing New York City silversmiths, jewelers, and merchants with a steady supply of wares for stock. This tea set belonged to Mary Elizabeth Goad Bedlow and John Beekman, who married in 1792. Each piece is engraved with Mary's initials on one side and the Beekman family arms on the other, representing an alliance of the two families.
Credit Line: 
Bequest of Catherine Augusta De Peyster
Provenance: 
Mary Elizabeth Good Bedlow (1771-1845), who married John Beekman (1768-1843); to their daughter Mary Beekman (1800-1885), who married William Axtell De Peyster (1793-1856); to their daughter Catherine Augusta De Peyster (1835-1911), the donor.
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.
Creative: Tronvig Group