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  • Item Category: Alcohol & Smoking
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Jun 29, 2007
  • Channel: Auction House

For barware collectors, those interested in vintage hammered-metal items, and lovers of silverplate objects in general, up for auction is a handsome, nicely polished E.P.N.S. cocktail shaker made by Bernard Rice's Sons of New York City, probably from the 1920s or 1930s (but not necessarily a great example of Art Deco or Streamline Moderne design like other barware produced during that period). In fact, the hammered surface and somewhat more traditional (i.e., non-streamlined) design would make it fit very well in an Arts and Crafts room setting.

It's interesting the way the hammered pattern on the lower section is looser, with the indentations larger than on the upper section (the two sections are divided by a raised horizontal line about 5-1/2 inches up from the bottom) , w the hammered bits are denser and the all-around pattern is more marked. Most of the top of the lid is hammered, t are concave, indented areas all along the top of the lid's handle, and the main handle, spout, and removable stopper/cap are not hammered. All in all, the contrasts between the hammered and smooth bits of metal make for a rich overall design of this very attractive piece.

The hammered-silver shaker is fully marked/engraved on the bottom (the close-up photo is a bit off-color -- in realty, the bottom is as shiny as the rest of the piece -- but at least you can read the signature). Two lines reading "APOLLO / E.P.N.S" are surrounded by a rectangular box, and below them are: "MADE IN U.S.A. BY / BERNARD RICE'S SONS, INC. / 3639" (the latter four digits are probably a mold or style number). The piece is a little under 9-1/4 inches high from the top of the handle to the bottom of the shaker, and at its widest it measures approximately 6-1/2 inches. Note that I sold a similar design not long ago on eBay, but it was a bit bigger all around -- 10 inches high by 7-1/2 inches wide. Unlike that larger shaker, however, a well-tarnished model that I chose not to polish, I did put a lot of elbow grease into this shaker and polished it with Silvo wadding -- and it came out gleaming and lovely, so it's all ready to display on your bar or kitchen or other shelf or cabinet!

For those not aware of it, E.P.N.S. stands for "electro-plated nickel silver," and such items usually comprise a brass holloware vessel onto which nickel plating and then silver plating are applied. FYI, Apollo Studios of New York was a division of Bernard Rice's Sons and items marked with the Apollo stamp were made from 1909 and into the 1940s. Bernard Rice's Sons went out of business in 1958.

Both the removable lid of the cocktail shaker and the little screw-top stopper (or pour cap) on the spout -- t's no strainer, as on some shakers -- are made of metal and cork. The bottom layer of cork -- interestingly, t are six layers of it (laminated cork, in a way) -- at the bottom of the lid has worn away a bit. The lid is a bit different from that seen on other Bernard Rice's Sons shakers, which often sport big round knobs, not decorative openwork handles like this.

The cocktail shaker is being sold AS IS. It has dings or dents that I could see or feel -- just the hammered surface overall -- but t is a bit of discoloring and t, the natural results, I'd imagine, of use and age. I am establishing a reasonable starting price for the piece, and t is NO RESERVE.

Shipping and handling for U.S. addresses $9 (first class), for Canada $15, for all others $20. PayPal only for international buyers, but for domestic buyers I accept PayPal, money orders, and personal checks. If you pay with a personal check, I will not send out the item until after the check clears in my bank account. Payment is expected within one week of the end of the auction, unless you contact me and we work out another time frame. Insurance optional and extra. I can combine shipments if you win more than one item, so if you are the winning bidder of this piece and plan to bid on another of my items, please email me asap, so I wait to send you an invoice (which wi...