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Monday, December 1, 2008

Who Owns Gorham Company?

The Gorham Company was founded in 1831. Producing very popular popular patterns like Chantilly, Buttercup and Strasbourg, Gorham has a proud history. However, during the past 25 years, the company has seen some major changes.
  • The conglomerate, Textron, acquired Gorham in 1982.
  • Ownership passed to Dansk International Designs in 1989.
  • In 1991, Brown-Forman (known more for distilled spirits) bought Gorham and folded the company into the Lenox division.
  • Department 56 bought the Lenox division in 2006.

Occasionally, you will see negative comments regarding the degradation of quality since the purchase by Brown-Forman. We are not experts in this subject and will not attempt to verify or deny these implications. However, we invite comments from visitors to this blog who might have more information.

By clicking on "Comments/Questions" below, you can see posted comments and add your own questions and comments.


Anonymous said...

Interesting. I used to sell silver and china as a young married for a major dept store - but haven't in years. Lately when trying to buy products online, I noticed that it would say Lenox/Gorham and that almost all of Gorham's patterns in crystal are discontinued or unavailable, Too bad - they made beautiful things? Are their silver patterns still available - such as Chantilly and Buttercup - and purchasable at major outlets under the Gorham name??

Silver Jim said...

Yes, sterling silver flatware is still manufactured under the Gorham name and available at many retail outlets.

Chantilly and Buttercup are also two of the most popular patterns in the secondary markets like eBay.

Ag Coater said...

Lenox and its associated brands have exitted bankruptcy and ben purchased by Clarion Capital Partners a NY based firm as of March 3, 2009.

Anonymous said...

In July 2007, Lenox sold Gorham as well as Kirk-Steiff, Whiting and Durgin to Lifetime Brands.

treci said...

Hay Library at Brown University directed me to your site. I have a Gorham necklace my mother-in-law gave me that I am trying to find more information on but any and all searches for 'Gorham Jewelery' have turned up nothing. Do you have any ideas on how to find out more? I am afraid choosing an appraiser at random will also fail to give me any information, based on my recent experience.

Silver Jim said...

I am not an expert on Gorham jewelry. However, I will investigate this.

Maybe other readers have the answer. I'll post an answer if I find something.

Silver Jim said...

Regarding the Gorham jewelry comment:

Do Google searches for:

Gorham necklace

Craigslist Gorham necklace

This will result in a few articles that seem relevant.

Silver Jim said...

One more comment regarding Gorham jewelry:

Go here:

and sumbit your question to Gorham. They have responded to some of my questions (not all) in the past.

Unknown said...

My father started out at Gorham pushing a silver cart. He later attended Rhode Island School of Design to learn the art of silver chasing- which is now a lost art. My father was very gifted and even taught me how to write my signature artistically--to leave a lasting impression with its grace and movement. Eventually, Dad moved our Mom and all 6 of us kids to California; he became V.P. of the Western Bronze Division. My family lived the Gorham tradition. I did my first school paper on the history of Gorham. Unfortunately, tradition and commitment to excellence aren't enough to keep a company going. However, the Gorham people I met as a young girl & up through my college years were dedicated to Gorham. My father is in heaven now, and I think that if he could change anything, he would change the way he found his identity in his work and in his company. When the company was sold, my Dad died of a broken heart. I'm grateful though that God revealed to him that his job didn't define him- his role as husband, father and friend were way more important. Psalm 37:4

HihoSilber said...

Does anyone have info on what material Gorham used for heat stop on Chantilly tea and coffee pots? Pieces produced circa 1900 look to have ivory. Pieces produced around 1950 look different than earlier stops. Thanks.

Unknown said...

I almost lost these three tea cups. They have COPYRIGHT 1888 and one CUP has 0810 and 53 which might be fabricated #53. Not sure. They are very old and need to be polished but because Gorham started his business in 1831, Engravings are the same on all three cups.

Unknown said...

I have a sterling silver statue of Christopher Columbus. The first one was cast in 30000 ounces of silver. Mine weighs 929 ounces
The base reads Gorham 1975 sterling. It's a miniature of the original. Has anyone seen another one like it?

Anonymous said...

Have silver statue of Columbus. Replica of the one in Rhode Island. The base reads Gorham 1975 sterling. It weighs 929 ounces. Please give feedback. No one has heard of it

Silver Jim said...

This is in response to the question about a statue of Christopher Columbus.

I am not familiar with a replica like this. If it is 100% sterling, it is worth quite a lot based solely on silver content. However, sometimes articles like this have some sort of internal content, often made of a type of cement. A visual review by a professional appraiser might be in order.