N.M. Uri Distillery - Louisville - 1890's -Hotel Silver

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  • Item Category: Advertising
  • Source: eBay
  • Sold Date: Apr 30,2011
  • Channel: Online Auction
Here is a very rare 1893 to 1910 era side logo very large 5” tall by 8” wide (from the tip of the spout to the opposite far side of the handle) silver plate pre-prohibition “N.M. Uri & Co. – Louisville – Kentucky – Old R.H. Parker – Cold Tea” (Rye) silver plate teapot. This is a very scarce and ornate style that was made for the distillery by the Aurora Silver Co. I have only seen this version just a couple of times in the past several years. If you collect pre-prohibition, hotel silver, or Louisville Kentucky Distillery items, you might want to consider this great piece for your collection.

Historically, Old R. H. Parker was a product of the N M URI & CO. that was located in Louisville Kentucky. N.M. Uri originally operated a wholesale liquore company in in Paducah, Kentucky in 1872, but later joined with Bernard and Isaac Bernheim to form Bernheim Bros. & Uri. However by 1897, he sold his interest in the distillery to form his own company, which was N. M. Uri & Co. His company in 1897 took over and started operating the International Distillery that was located at Hunters Station in Louisville. The company also had a second office location in Chicago, Illinois. N.M. Uri continued to operate until the onset of Prohibition in 1919.

Some of company’s other popular brands that were distilled under different labels other than Old R.H. Parker, included The Claypool (possibly named after the famous Claypool Hotel in Indianapolis), Brookwood, International, Kendall Club, Jim Pearce, Kenton Club, Mumm’s Extra Rye, Lime Springs, Montreal, Parker Rye, International, Old Roman, Proctor Knott, Oyama", and Queen Bee.

This very ornate and elaborately made teapot is completely stunning in its appearance, including the embossed upper and lower floral mounts, double marked highly detailed ornate cursive script inscriptions on the sides that reads “Old R.H. Parker” and “N.M. Uri & Co. – Louisville Ky”. Atop the lid it reads “COLD TEA”. The upper and lower mounts are done in the most highly detailed type of floral scroll designs that greatly enhance the tea pot’s appearance.

It was made by the Aurora Silver Plate Manufacturing Co., which was located in Aurora, Illinois. This company was a silver smith company, which also specialized in making “Special Metal” for breweries / distilleries, riverboat companies, restaurants / lunch rooms, and even hotels. The company started operations in 1869 and continued to operate until it became Mulholland Bros. in 1919, the year in which Prohibition came into effect. Aurora was very small and their silver plate examples today are not common. Finding a piece that is also an actual advertising – hotel silver type item is even rarer. The teapot has the catalog number of 50 and the vintage circular backstamp that reads “Quadruple Plate – Aurora S.P. MFG. CO. – Warranted”.

This particular teapot is in very nice condition. As with all special metals – white metal mounts type silver, over the years sometime a piece’s plating removes leaving a beautiful dark patina finished with some areas of silver plate still left, which is what has happened with this piece. It was properly cleaned and the darker patina really shines and looks great. The lid still has most of its silver, which it works well and seats properly onto the body of the teapot. The handle is firmly attached. The inside does have some old pit marks / corrosion marks, but not that bad. Overall, this teapot is outstanding and looks great!

This very rare pitcher would have been most likely used at a hotel, restaurant, saloon, or tavern that served Parker Rye for serving such beverage at the bar, lunch counter, or for use with the establishment’s hotel china type china for table settings. This is not a souvenir; rather, this is the heavyweight type Steamship, Hotel, and Railroad silverplate. The pitcher is in overall excellent condition with only a couple of very light pit marks on in a few places to the exterior and a couple of light scratches. The inside is in very nice condition!

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