Good Late Classical New Orleans Coin Silver Water Pitcher
1833-1842, Brower Brothers, the ovoid body with waisted collar and integral spout, with acanthus-mounted arched reeded handle and knopped circular foot, decorated with milled palmette and floral banding, monogrammed "VL".
h. 13", l. 9", dia. 5-3/4", 39.95 t. oz.
Notes: The firm of S. & B. Brower of Albany, New York, established their New Orleans branch at 17 Camp Street in 1833. Brothers Sidney (often erroneously given as Samuel) and Baldwin Brower were born in New York to Anthony Post Brower and his wife Louisa Gardiner on December 18, 1806 and December 25, 1810, respectively. There is no record of their apprenticeship or training, but it is to be noted that their maternal uncles were the talented silversmiths Sidney (1787-1827) and Baldwin Gardiner (1791-1868) of the celebrated Philadelphia firm of Fletcher & Gardiner. The Mid-Atlantic neoclassical influence is readily apparent in the present lot, which appealed to the "American" immigrants to New Orleans which arrived in great number between the Battle of New Orleans and the Civil War. Sidney Brower died on January 26, 1836, and the firm was reorganized in 1842 as B. Brower & Co. with another brother George Clinton Brower (1816-1864), by which time the company was no longer a manufacturer, but primarily an importer and retailer of fancy goods. Baldwin Brower died (on a visit to Palermo, Sicily) on February 15, 1845, and his interest in the company was retained by his widow Elizabeth Barker Brower and (later) her second husband, William T. VanZandt until its dissolution in 1855. A pair of pitchers, each nearly identical to the present lot, was exhibited at the seminal 1980 "Crescent City Silver" exhibition at the Historic New Orleans Collection and LSU Anglo-American Art Museum, and again in 1997 at Longue Vue House and Gardens, New Orleans, Louisiana.
**Numerous short, shallow dents on the body, the largest about 3/4" long and below right of the monogram. There is a long, narrow area of abrasion on the left proper side of the body (visible in photograph), with a shorter and less pronounced area on the right side, nearer the monogram. There is also a 1" dent at the crest of the handle. Marked (on the underside) "Brower / 17 Camp St. / New Orleans".