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Towle Silversmiths: Sterling Silverware Company - A Brief History

Towle Silversmiths of Newburyport, Massachusettsw began in 1857 as Towle & Jones, but the company's heritage goes back to the 17th century. In 1679, William Moulton II left Hampton, New Hampshire and settled at Newbury (later Newburyport) where he became a trader and may have done some silversmithing.

His Son, Joseph, is generally recognized as the first silversmith of the Moulton line, which is said to have the longest continuous span of silversmithing of any American family. From father to son, this family produced silversmiths for two hundred years, more of its members entering the silver industry than from any other family in early American history. Even one woman in the Moulton clan--Lydia, daughter of William III--- did some silversmithing. Although most of the Moultons carried on their craft in Newburyport, some went to other communities where they established themselves as silversmiths.

The third William moved in a covered wagon to Marietta, Ohio, carrying his silversmith's tools with him. His son, Joseph, had four sons, all of whom were silversmiths. Ebenezer moved to Boston and Enoch to Portland, Maine, each of them continuing their crafts in their respective places. Abel inherited his father's business in Newburyport and the fourth William established his own shop in the same place.

By this time, Anthony F. Towle went from Hampton to Newburyport where he became apprenticed to the fourth William Moulton. Anthony was a descendent of Philip Towle and the son of Jabez, who had purchased the General Moulton house in Hampton. Later Anthony joined with William P. Jones to establish a silversmith partnership. These two subsequently purchased the fourth Joseph Moulton's business and formed the firm of Towle and Jones in 1857.

From this enterprise developed the silversmith establishment today known as The Towle Silversmiths. The company mark of a lion mounted on a script letter "T" was supposedly based on the family coat of arms. Silver patterns are: Aristocrat, Awakening, Benjamin Franklin, Candlelight, Canterbury, Cascade, Charlemagne, Chased Diana, Chippendale, Colonial Thread, Contessina, Contour, Country Manor, Craftsman, Debussy, D'Orleans, Dorothy Manners, Drury lane, El Grandee, Esplanade, Federal Cotillion, Fiddle Thread, Fortana, French Colonial, French Provincial, Georgian, King Richard, Lady Constance, Lady Diana, Lady Mary, Lafayette, Laureate, Legato, Louis XIV, Madeira, Marie Louise, Mary Chilton, Meadow Song, Newport Shell, Novantique, Old Brocade, Old Colonial, Old English, Old Lace, Old Master,  Old Mirror, Old Newbury/Newbury, Paul Revere, Peachtree Manor, Petit Point, Pomona, R.S. V. P., Rambler Rose, Rose Solitaire, Royal Windsor, Scroll & Bead, Sculptured Rose, Seville, Silver Flutes, Silver Plumes, Silver Spray, Southwind, Spanish Provincial, Symphony, Vespera, Virginia Carvel,  and Virginia Lee.







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