Antique: Edwardian Sterling Silver Necklace with Graduated Links (Double Albert Chain)
This is a great antique chain that is substantial enough to be worn on its own or mixed in with other silver, white gold or platinum chains of varying lengths. It is a double Albert, watch chain in sterling silver, with its original hallmarked T-bar and dog clips.
These chains, which were used to suspend pocket watches, were named after Queen Victoria’s husband Prince Albert who often wore them. Both Victoria and Albert were considered fashion trendsetters of their time.
Albert chains come in singles and doubles. A double has two dog clips, with a T-bar in the center. A Victorian or Edwardian gentleman was not well dressed without one. A watch hung from one end and sometimes a decorative or functional item was attached to the other (e.g. a watch fob seal, watch key, vesta, compass, sovereign coin case).
Today, more and more women are wearing them as necklaces and bracelets. It seems that this practice is not new. When loved ones went off to the First World War, they would leave their pocket watches (and chains) behind for their girlfriends and wives to keep safe. Many would wear them around their necks not only to keep them safe, but also as an expression of love.
Dimensions & Details: Albert Watch Chain Necklace
- The length of the chain (not including the fob drop) is 16 inches or 406.4 mm. The length of the fob drop portion of the chain is 1 1/4. The fob itself measures 1 1/2 inches long by 1 inch wide.
- This is a graduated link chain with the smallest link measuring approximately 6 mm wide by 7.2 mm long and the largest measuring approximately 8.4 mm wide by 10.5 mm long.
Period & Hallmarks
- The T-bar and dog (swivel) clips are all marked with the maker's mark WWC (William Walter Cashmore) and there is a date mark on the T-bar representing 1902. The dog clips, T-bar, and the individual links on the chain are all marked a Lion Passant (English Sterling Silver). Some of the marks on the links are rubbed and faded.
- The shield fob is marked on the back, HP, with Birmingham silver hallmarks. The fob is older and dates to the Victorian period with a mark for 1898.
- It is in good antique condition with some small surface scratches on the fob shield (see pictures).
If you are interested in reading more about the jewelry terms or decorative periods referenced throughout the site, visit our Resources section for additional information.
Find out how to care for your collection of antique and modern jewels: visit our Jewelry Care page to get advice on maintaining and storing your treasured pieces.
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