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Pickle Casters

Maker: J. S. Jarden & Bro., Philadelphia, Penn.
Material: Silver electroplate and glass
Year: ca. 1860
Provenance: From Adelicia to her son Joseph H. Acklen to his daughter Jeannette Acklen Noel to Ellen Stokes Wemyss by bequest to Belmont Mansion Association
2001.04.14 a-c Ellen Stokes Wemyss estate

J. S. Jarden & Bro. is listed in the 1859 Philadelphia City Directory as a manufacturer as 304 Chestnut street. John S. Jarden is listed in the same directory as an electro plater along with his brother is Samuel. Most large cities in America had companies that did electroplating. The 1857 Campbell city directory for Nashville listed two electro platers of silver.* It is seldom that a piece from one of these small companies is found.

Today only the cucumber is associated with pickles but in the nineteenth century it was just one of many vegetables and fruit that were preserved by pickling. A survey of cookbooks from the last half of the nineteenth century incudes Mrs. Beaton’s landmark 1861 cookbook with Xx receipts for pickles including lemons with and without there peel, onions, nasturtiums and walnuts. An 1853 Boston Cookbook, Mrs. Chadwick’s Home Cookery added to the usual lemons and walnuts and seventeen items, including watermelon and mush melon rinds, to be pickled. Before refrigeration and fast transportation pickling was a way of preserving seasonal fruits and vegetables. Pickled items added interest to what was sometimes a bland diet.

*H. Leonard Silver Plating on College Street was in business for many years and Henry Parkhurst on Deaderick Street was a silver and brass plater.

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