The Silversmith
by Chetan and Kazia

Today we use paper money or credit cards but in Colonial time money was silver coins. Things made of silver were as good as money. In fact they were money! If you don't know about silversmiths, come here and learn about the art of silversmiths.

The silversmiths in the Colonies were skilled craftsmen. They were also bankers. Silversmiths helped people turned their money into silver objects. This kept their money safe. These objects were handed down from generation to generation. Silversmiths also signed their work by putting their initials or mark on the piece, just like painters.

Some tools they used were:

  • Graver -  used to engrave creative designs on a silver piece
  • Hammer - used for working silver
  • Ladle - used to handle melted silver
  • Refining furnace - used for melting coins into silver
  • Shears - used in cutting silver plates
  • Tongs - used for holding silver during reheat

Silversmiths made silver teapots, porringers, bowls, candlesticks, spoons, cups, mugs, inkstands, tankards, later coffeepots, teapots and strainers.

One of the most famous silversmiths of the colonial period was Paul Revere of Boston, Massachusetts.

Click on a trade below to read more about it.

Source: Fisher, Leonard Everett. The Silversmiths. New York: Benchmark, 1997, c1964.

Back to Tradesmen

Mrs. Almeida's Class | Mrs. Doane's Class
Mrs. Hongell's Class  |  Mrs. Shemin's Library
Pocantico Hills School

Email us at: