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J E Caldwell
J E Caldwell  
Hi, I have several silver coffee and tea serving pieces that are from J E Caldwell. They do not say sterling: just J E Caldwell Philadelphia

Also I have several pieces that have many markings but do not say sterling. If they were sterling would it say sterling, or can pieces be sterling that aren't stamped sterling?   Thank you!


Since about 1870, manufacturers in the United States have marked their sterling pieces somehow. The most common is the word, "Sterling". Sometimes you see "925" or "925/1000". Sometimes silver plate pieces are marked as such. A very common silver plate marking is "EPNS". In earlier times, pieces were often made of either silver plate or coin silver but markings were not standard.

Markings on silver in other countries varied widely. Great Britain probably had the most elaborate system. You can find examples of sterling and silver plate marks from the U. S. and other countries at They also have a forum where you can submit questions with pictures.

Most pieces marked with "J. E. Caldwell" were actually made by other companies. Caldwell was often just the retailer.

I know this does not fully answer your questions because there are always exceptions. However, if there is no indication of sterling either with U.S. markings or foreign markings, they probably are not sterling.

Hope this helps.


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Jim Stringer


I answer questions about sterling flatware and other sterling pieces........... I answer value questions at I also author a blog at and write articles about silver at ........... Thanks to nominations from questioners, I'm listed in the Top 50 Experts for 2014 and 2015.......... NOTE: Please do not give me a verbal description of a pattern and ask me to identify it. Attach a picture if you need such help..........


Buyer and seller of sterling pieces for over ten years. Author of the blog, Sterling silver writer for

Publications;; "Selling_Your_Silver: A Guide to Finding a Buyer and Getting a Good Price (

BS, University of Alabama; MS, University of Maryland

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