The guidelines below represent the period of common use of these design elements, however they are not all-inclusive. Gently clean the frames by rubbing them with a soft, dry polishing cloth. The above information is a very brief summary and although publishedinformation is limited on the subject of antique vision aids the following references are recommended and usually available on Amazon. How to Identify Printed Antiques Identifying antique books or printed materials is often simpler than figuring out the history of other potentially antique objects. Repairs should always be done by a professional who has the knowledge and the proper tools to restore antique frames.
John Wesley Jarvis 1780-1840 , Portrait of a Gentleman, miniature painting, 1807, private collection, courtesy of Elle Shushan American Storytellers 550, by Andy Thomas, courtesy of Maze Creek Studio. If it's a table, turn it over and look for marks or labels. Much remains unanswered so this should only be used as a guide. Some double lens lorgnettes are hinged between the lenses and fold out to a single plane when in use. One of the most interesting innovations that sets this period apart from the earlier times, however, was the temporary introduction of double sets of lenses, with hinged lenses attached to the eyerims either for bifocal action or as sunglasses. Rimless oval shaped eyeglasses were a variant of a style called Riding Temple.
Amazingly, temples did not show up on spectacles until the beginning of the 18th century. Through the years, the different markers represented different things but mostly they were there for advertising. With the numbers came better record keeping. I'd love some info on these. How to Identify Antique China and Glassware Wondering if your grandmother's china is antique or something she picked up a few years ago? Likewise, determining the material can help pinpoint the decade of manufacture. But, because rules and regulations did not exist, any maker could and did put quality stamps on the pewter. Following is a webpage of some maker's marks of antique spectacles.
The more you know about an item's history, the more you will appreciate its beauty. They'd be sold in a retail vintage shop, assume can be priced higher than ebay. What about underneath or on the back panel of a drawer? If you're having problems identifying your object, one of these resources may help. Look at the style of the eyeglass frames. How else can you explain the fact that eyeglassses that are fifty years old are in many cases much more valuable in the marketplace than eyeglasses that are 150 years old. If there is an antique show in the area, take the item there.
After the 18th century, town marks became part of the maker's mark. The larger surfaces gave the artisan the chance to show off the natural beauty and marbled, variegated hues of the remnants of a hawksbill turtle's shell, rather than just as a bit of striping on the narrow surface of eyerims and temples. Simply narrow down your search by category or brand, and start browsing. The more silver the color the higher the tin content is. The riding temple spectacles was very popular from 1880 to the early 1920s. Familiarize yourself with styles and materials, as well as eyeglass frame manufacturers and marks.
I'm not at all sure these are as old as they appear. I noticed in my perusing on the web that there are many such dealers, including one in Maine that has a very large inventory of all types and styles of antique and vintage eyewear. Familiarize yourself with these different materials by referring to reference books and Internet sources. The pewter makers put hallmarks on their product similar to the silver hallmarks for city, date, duty and maker. If you're starting or adding to your collection, be aware of the differences between crystal stemware and regular glassware. If the frames are unmarked or if the marks are faded, the eyeglasses can be dated by determining the style and material. Following are links to a site with info on dating, etc.
Handles on scissors spectacles are often found with tortoiseshell or mother of pearl handles. Makers added antimony and copper for strength. Spectacles add a fitting period detail accessory for antiques or Revolutionary and Civil War collectors. One of the pioneers of American lens grinding — a highly technical, demanding art — was David Rittenhouse, who was active in the 1780s as the American economy began to burgeon following independence. These can date to the late 18th century but were continually produced until the late 19th century.
Most antique crystal has an etching, symbol or sticker made by the company that manufactured it. Alternatively, visit your public library to find books and reference guides that contain photos of antique crystal stems. There are, nevertheless, plenty of interesting from this era for the collector or someone who wants to add modern lenses to antique eyeglasses frames since eyeglasses are essentially timeless until they break. Identifying the frame style can provide valuable clues about when the glasses were made. And when it comes to something like eyeglasses, collectors are interested in usability.
Pince-nez spectacles regained a spectacular popularity during the late 19th century through the 1930's and are found in endless variety and patents. Other members of the community will then help you unofficially identify your object. She holds a bachelor's degree in communications and journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. Antique crystal stemware, coveted for its age and signature light-reflecting qualities, became a serving option for the elite during the 1800s. This lead content gives crystal its signature qualities, contributing to its strength and weight. Reading glasses of similar construction with a single lens were also made during the same period of time. The dates are listed in the books on antique pewter.