DescriptionA Three-Piece Gorham Chantilly Pattern Silver Coffee Set, Providence, Rhode Island, designed 1895
Marks: (lion-anchor-G), STERLING, DWU; DWV; DWW
11 inches high (27.9 cm)
36.27 troy ounces
Mr. & Mrs. Frank Morrill Murphy;
Thence by descent.
Frank Morrill Murphy (1854-1917) was an American mining and railroad mogul who was one of the principal owners of the Congress Gold Mining Company. Like many Americans, Murphy seized the opportunities opened by Manifest Destiny, leaving his home state of Arizona at a young age to conquer the West. A shrewd businessman, Murphy quickly rose to prominence in both industry and politics and was an influential force which drove the region's profitability and expansion. He became one of the Southwest's largest bankers and acquired interests in several gold and copper mines, which proved particularly profitable during currency panics. Known as the "Gentleman Capitalist," Murphy was instrumental in combating mining fraud, acquiring both the Arizona Republican and Arizona Journal-Milner newspapers to expose ill deeds. Murphy's financial success allowed him to buy his wife Ethel (1872-1950) a permanent residence at the Holland House, a few steps from the Waldorf Astoria in New York City. Ethel, whom he had married in 1892, was a prominent socialite and hostess whose charitable endeavors included soliciting donations for the construction of the Carnegie Library and donating a rental property to the Episcopal Church. The present lot is engraved with Ethel Mary Murphy's initials.
Each monogrammed EMM, creamer wrinkling at footed base with resultant slight lean, creamer with light dent to cartouche near monogram, coffee pot with push to base and resultant lean at standard, lid to coffee pot does not sit flush, errant nicking and scratching, with wear commensurate with age and use.
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