19th Century Tortoise Shell Snuff Box

(United States, 19th Century)

19th Century Tortoise Shell Snuff Box
2554 Lincoln Blvd # 696
Venice, CA, 90291
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19th Century Tortoise Shell Snuff Box


This snuff box is truly one of a kind. Its a remarkable box made of tortoise shell and inlaid silver, with engine turned work on the lid. The craftsmanship on this piece is remarkable. Even more curious is the beautiful hand-written note in old script that came inside of the box: "Benjamin Brewster's Snuff Box. Made of Tortoise Shell", and, "...this snuff box was owned and used by benjamin Brewster probably around 1800. He snuffed very little". The box was once owned by the American industrialist Benjamin Brewster, (possibly the financier, who was one of the original trustees of Standard Oil.)
The lid open and snaps closed perfectly. The box is in great condition for its age, with some normal wear around the hinges in the back. On the lid one of the silver strips that was pressed into the design is missing, but this does not deter from the beauty of this box. It is rare to find such impeccable detail and work on tortoise shell. The lid also has a reeded border, and the base too, has an unique design with ridges that were carved out of the original thick piece of tortoise shell. Although this piece is old, it was not used that often as indicated on the note, so it remains in great shape. The interior of the box was made with hoof, and this adds the nice deep dark tones to the tortoise shell. The box measures 2-3/4 by 1-1/2 by 3/4 of an inch high. This beautiful antique snuff box can be used to carry personal items, and can also serve as a pill box or jewelry box. Makes a great addition to a collection; a great conversation piece.


Origin United States
Category Antiquities
Period 19th Century
Style Georgian

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THB REF: 7209103174