Shiny Silver Trophies

In addition to paintings, sculpture, drawings and prints, the NSLM art collections include some wonderful examples of decorative art objects. Some of the most popular pieces are the shiny silver trophies, of all shapes and sizes. Since it’s highly unlikely that I will ever win any trophy as grand as these (though I never give up hope!), I will have to make do with caring for these precious objects here at the museum. But I will do so happily, because they are real treasures – delightful to look at and fun to research and study.

One of the trophy display cases in the Library.
One of the trophy display cases in the Library.

One of our most recent additions is the new National Sporting Library & Museum Cup. This is actually an active trophy which will be awarded every year at the running of the Virginia Fall Races.

National Sporting Library & Museum Cup, Elkington & Co., 1920, sterling silver, 12 ½ x 12 x 10 ¼ inches, Gift of Juliana May, 2014

The Virginia Fall Races, a steeplechase meet held every October at Glenwood Park in Middleburg, was founded in 1955 by Theodora Randolph (1905 – 1996) and George L. Ohrstrom, Sr. (1894 – 1955). The NSLM Cup (formerly called The Chronicle Cup) is a timber race run in memory of George L. Ohrstrom, Sr. and his son George L. Ohrstrom, Jr. (1927 – 2005), co-founders of the National Sporting Library and former owners of the Chronicle of the Horse.

The Warwick style trophy vase was crafted by the silversmiths Elkington & Company of London, in 1920. The NSLM name and logo engravings were added in 2014 by the generous donor, Juliana May.

(Pardon the iphone reflection!) These stamps, called hallmarks, identify who made this object and when they made it.
(Pardon the iphone reflection!) These stamps, called hallmarks, identify who made this object and when they made it.

“E&Co.” indicates the makers.

Lion PassantThe next symbol of a “Lion Passant” indicates sterling silver.

Leopard HeadThe “Leopard Head” means made in the city of London.  The letter “e” (with that particular border) is for the year 1920.

 

I’m looking forward to sharing more about our other trophies soon. (Even if I don’t win them myself!)

Nicole Stribling
Curator of Permanent Collections

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