Overall: 4 3/4 x 31 1/4 x 20 in. ( 12.1 x 79.4 x 50.8 cm )
Mark: stamped on base: "STERLING" above a lion passant in a chamfered rectangle, an anchor in a rectangle and a "G" in gothic script in a chamfered rectangle over "690/ G" engraved: in center of tray: "PRESENTED/ JOHN ROACH./ April 30, 1874./ IN RECOGNIT
Cast and wrought silver presentation tray; flat oval tray with an image of John Roach's ship works engraved in the center above the engraved initials, "J/R" superimposed in foliate script and below the engraved inscription, "PRESENTED/ TO/ JOHN ROACH./ April 30th 1874./ IN RECOGNITION OF HIS EMINENT SERVICES TO THE COMMERCIAL/ INTERESTS OF THE UNITED STATES IN DEVELOPING AND SUSTAINING/ IRON SHIP BUILDING." in roman letters; foliate scroll border with the names of his clients engraved inside around the edge; two medallions at the ends with images of his ship works; applied sides with molded edges and foliate scroll pierce work in the center; sides raised in the centers to an gee with gilt images of iron ships on the sides and two foliate scroll strap handles applied to the ends; maker's mark stamped on the base.
This tray was part of a tea and coffee serviced presented to John Roach (1815-1887) on April 30, 1874 at a lavish gentlemen's dinner held at Delmonico's restaurant in New York City. Honored by eighty-two businessmen for "all he had done to revive American shipbuilding," Roach was regarded as a champion of the industry and its workers. The Roach presentation received extensive attention in contemporary newspapers. The New York Times described it as "a magnificent collection of plate, worthy in every way of the high reputation of the Gorham Manufacturing Company." Made in the years following Gorham's expansion, the service required the work of numerous specialist craftsmen with its construction taking more than sixty-four hours to complete.
Gift of the Children and Grandchildren of John Roach
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.