Silver and Flatware/Tea Set


Tea Set Picture
Tea Set Picture  

Pic of Bottom with Engraving
Pic of Bottom with Eng  
I recently received an old tea service as a gift.  It has a hallmark that says E.P enclosed in a diamond pattern.  It also has another hallmark/service mark that is an S within a circle.  It states it is STERLING 950.  It is also hand engraved with a number, although on some of the pieces, one of the numbers is crossed through with a line and another number is engraved in its stead.  This piece could date back to the 1930's-1950's and may have had Japanese origin as the original owner lived in Okinawa for a period of time.  I cannot find a lot of information on the Internet, and know that EP might mean Electroplating....however, the 950 STERLING stamp and the engraved numbers intrigue me.  Wondered if you might shed light on the pieces.

Hi, Randall.

I'm not going to be much help here but I'll toss out a few thoughts.

I believe the "E. P" inside the diamond refers to the manufacturer name. Since the word "Sterling" is there, that would overrule silver plate normally.

The "950" is interesting. Standard U.S. sterling is 92.5% silver and one often sees pieces marked as "925". The mark of "950" is often found in other countries and usually means 95% silver. However, it still could be of American origin. The handwritten marks don't mean anything to me.

I found three silversmiths that used variations of "E P": Edward Pear, Elias Pelletreau and and Edward Putnam. However, these were late 18th century/early 19th century silversmiths and you don't usually see such clear marks on early pieces, especially with the word, "Sterling".

So, that's all I've been able to find. Consider posting you question and links to your pictures on the forum at Maybe someone will recognize the marks.

Sorry I could not help.

Best wishes,


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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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