Antique Art Nouveau sterling silver overlay glass liquor or whisky hip flask made by Gorham, circa 1890's to early 1900's.
The glass flask is entirely covered in gorgeous sterling silver overlay. Intricately patterned, finely crafted and expertly decorated with hand engraved accents and detailing. The overlay is patterned in sinuous scrolling that mimic waves and puffs of clouds or smoke, creating a very mysterious and compelling atmosphere for the central ornament adorning the flask. Decorating the center is a charming scene of a lady assisting, or better yet directing, Cherub with his bow and arrow. Her nude figure is exquisitely portrayed in a classical pose with her hair piled up in a tight bun, her legs gracefully suspended from a seat of artfully arrayed cascading fabric with palm leaves and exotic florals in the background. With a smile on her lips, she assists Cherub with his bow, likely aiming an arrow at an intended lover's heart! Gorgeously crafted from sterling silver, the ornamentation is 3-dimensional and finely detailed with very realistic rendering, and of course a charming and whimsical imagery juxtaposed with those amazing swirls and waves of overlay! The reverse bearing a finely engraved monogram of initials DHB. Topped by a hinged lid with twist and lock closure and cork lined interior, bearing an engraved monogram. Measures 6 1/2" length x 3 3/4" width.
In very good condition with no chips or cracks to the glass flask. The sterling mounts are in very good order, no dings or dents, just general wear / surface scratches from use and handling. Bearing the Gorham hallmark of a lion, anchor and letter G, this particular mark was used in the last quarter of the 19th century. Marked 999/1000 FINE, indicating a higher grade of silver than .925 sterling and almost pure silver content! Bearing numbers D309, and an indicator that the flask holds 3/8 pint. Bearing a name of Don H. Bacon. Could it be that this flask once belonged to the Don H. Bacon, who was head of the Minnesota Iron Company and former president of Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Company? One of the big mining men of the northwest at the turn of the 19th century? Fascinating to think!