Posted 5 months ago
Here is a nice little box I picked up for a few £'s. I now use it for safely keeping my spare dip pen nibs and pencil leads etc. It is 4 1/2" x 3" x 2" and lined with cedarwood. The quality of the box is really quite nice, the inlay a little damaged in places, but does not detract. It is quite heavy in guage.
Inside the lid, is what caught my eye; engraved is: "HADFIELDS" "Makers of Fine Varnishes since 1840". This engraving is not to the same high level of workmanship as the box itself.
UNKNOWN: I know nothing about the box and wonder as to it's original purpose in life. Perhaps a promotional trade gift, but what date? I would love to know the approximate age of this piece. With the Cedar lining I'm wondering if this has something to do with storing cigars (small), cigarettes or tobacco?
KNOWN: I have researched the engraved motto, and the only information I have so far found is held in the Surrey History Centre archives; An extract:
"Hadfields (Merton) Ltd. were formed in 1917 to act as manufacturers of and dealers in varnish, japans, enamels, colours, oils, paints, pigments, cements, dye wares and other such, and particularly to acquire the businesses of varnish, paint and enamel manufacturers carried on under the name of George Hadfield, Phipps Bridge, Merton and George Hadfield. These businesses were conveyed to the company by George Hugh Hadfield and Samuel Rogers Hadfield, both of whom were directors. The Merton company claimed to have been trading since 1840 (letterhead seen at the depositor's office), and it appears that George Hadfield, father of George Hugh and Samuel Rogers, had purchased Paul Addington's varnish works at Phipps Bridge in 1892. Addington was certainly already working there in 1851."
COMMENT: The above dates cover 1840 to 1917 (when Co. formed), but I feel this box must be post 1917..................