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Adrian Cook

Gift knives

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Hi there Sheffield people.hope everyone is ok up there after all that wind and rain.Not been quite so bad down here in Essex.Havn't been on here for a while been in and out of hospital also popping back there next week but only for a short stay.On Tuesday I brought a couple of knives of my old friend clive.one was a Sheffield post war Amy jack knife and the other was a post war German Decora multi blade dagger.after paying my friend for them and walking back to my car he shouted out hi Ady got a rusty old knife in me car you can have that ,cheers Clive I replied .It turned out to be Johnson western works Sheffield I think gift knife.I very carefully cleaned it and oiled it basically saved it's distuction which made me happy.Here it is with my James barber knife .any info would be great .thank friends.The Johnson knife is the darker one.thanks again.

 

 

 

 

 

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Hello  Adrian , sorry to here you have been in and out of hospital. You must have quite a collection of knives now, how about laying them all out and giving us a photo' of them all please?

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Christopher Johnson & Co., Sheffield, England.
Christopher Johnson, who was born in Sheffield in about 1809, started his cutlery business (according to a trade catalogue) in 1836 in Howard Street. His early career, however, is obscure and the firm did not appear at the Howard Street address until 1854. Possibly Christopher Johnson may have been a partner (with Henry Johnson) in Webster & Johnson, a cutlery firm which operated between about 1839 and 1846 in Sycamore Street (William Webster). Christopher and Henry Johnson, merchant clerks, had been listed in a directory in 1833.
By 1841, Christopher Johnson was enumerated in the Census as a merchant living in Devonshire Street. In the late 1840s, he moved to Gell Street and then by 1852 to Rockingham Street. In 1854, he was based in Western Works in Howard Street, with an outlet in Hatton Garden, London. Western Works was apparently so named because of Johnson's flourishing trade in the south-western counties of England. In 1859, he relocated to Portobello Street, which was to be the centre of the firm's operations well into the twentieth century. Johnson was essentially a merchant: but he listed himself as a steel converter and refiner, and a 'manufacturer' of files, tools, and a complete range of cutlery (including table and pocket knives).
Johnson soon developed a liking for country life, partly one suspects because his business was so profitable. He brought new partners into the business, such as his nephew John Hibbert (c.1832-1908). In 1868, another partner, John Marshall, joined the business, and the title '& Co' was added. Marshall was born at Chapel Hall on 8 May 1836, the son of William Marshall of Calderbank, Lanark. Herbert John Johnson and Herbert William Johnson (presumably sons) were listed as partners in 1871, but this was a brief involvement. By 1871, Christopher Johnson had moved to The Grange, Carlton, Nottinghamshire, and withdrew from the partnership with Hibbert and Marshall in 1879. Johnson died at The Grange on 2 May 1881, aged 72, after 'a lingering illness'.

More here --------         http://strazors.com/index.php?id=493&

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ERA over JAMES BARBER over SHEFFIELD     I & J Barber - Sheffield

I & J Barber (James Barber) was established in 1802. The founder was Isaac Barber (1788-1854). James (1818-1859) was his son. ERA trademark, was used from the mid 19th century, and possibly from as early as 1835. 'James Barber' was also used, particularly on razors. Isaac and James died within a few years of each other, in 1854 and 1859, respectively.
Afterwards, James' wife Harriet took control of the business, which in 1861, had 16 employees. The business soon passed to her son Edward, but after he died in 1885, his widow Mary Ann took over.
By 1900 I & J Barber were at Era Works, Wheeldon Street, with Mary Ann's son James running the firm.

Before 1914 the Barber name and mark passed to Thomas Ellin and later to  Joseph Elliott & Sons.

Joseph Elliott & Sons bought out a number of Sheffield Cutlers including their trademarks and tools. The company continued to make knives under the trade marks of those Companies and this one was listed as Joseph Elliot until the 1970's.

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Will do boginspro.I love my Sheffield knives and love to find them and save them from turning to rust like I do any knife really but Sheffield knives are  a bit more special to me.I collect all types of knives and would love to show then on Sheffield history.If I get a chance next Monday when my wife works late I will take over my lounge and get some pics . They will be mixed together though like there might be a German one next to a Sheffield one so home that doesn't affend anybody.Thanks bogispro for the info on my two gift knives  . cheers.

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Adrian you really should buy Geoff Tweedale's Directory Of Sheffield Cutlery Manufacturers Vol 2, its sold by Lulu  and it cost around £30, I'm hoping to get this latest edition for Crimbo, this book is absolute must for anyone interested in Sheffield cutlery, pen & pocket knives, razors etc.. Geoff sent me his first edition for assisting him with some research and strangely enough it was on the Western Works which Christopher Johnson produced his knives, I worked in the same works in the early sixties 1961-63 for a firm called John Donnelly, we produced carver forks, plus a whole range of round tang spoon and forks plus scale tang forks, no knives. Sadly the works was demolished and the cursed students flats were erected on its site.

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Hello, I have been attracted here by Boginspro's reference to the “Era Works” but after my first picture of an ad from a Graces Guide dated 1951 I will need to take the edge off the conversation.

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Below is a composite photo featuring marks on 2 kitchen items I will loosely describe as spoons.

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“Era Silver” can easily seen on both items and it is not unusual for the name of the “works” name to become the trademark or vice versa. Unfortunately we do not see the “Barber” name at all in my photo. We see “E.G&Co” on the older spoon and “Homesneeda” on what was a large drainer spoon. We do not see either abbreviation for Thomas Ellin or Joseph Elloit. The “Homesneeda” item has the possible makers mark, “H.S” in the triangle, as I do not think that the triangle mark represents “nickel silver” electroplate. Is there any guidance anywhere to indicate what companies are using the “Era Silver” name? 

Kalfred

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