Last week we wrote that we didn’t know anything about Benjamin Marsh, whose jewelry store passed into the hands of Henry Rowlands in 1869. But that’s not entirely true: we know that Marsh received this patent for an Albany-centric spoon design. Design patent 20,948 was filed and patented in 1891, and applied for only 3½ years. The application read:
“Be it known that I, Benjamin Marsh, a citizen of the United States, residing at Albany . . . have invented certain new and useful improvements in Designs for Spoons; and I do hereby declare the following to be a full, clear, and exact description of the invention, such as will enable others skilled in the art to which it appertains to make and use the same . . .
“On the outer end portion of the Handle A of the spoon is the figure a of a man attired in the dress of a “Knickerbocker” of the seventeenth century and seated on a chair and facing the beholder and smoking a pipe. On the lower end portion of handle A is the figure b of a sturgeon, with its tail at the bowl B.”
The application doesn’t mention “C,” which is the lettering “Albany” between sturgeon and Knickerbocker.
Commemorative spoons were a thing.
His love of spoons must not have been a short-term thing. In the 1850 proceedings of the New York Agricultural Society, Benjamin Marsh was one of the judges of silverware and cutlery.