The Rise of Towle Silversmiths

Towle is synonymous with the pinnacle of fine silver craftsmanship, a name that carries centuries of heritage and prestige. The exquisite pieces crafted by Towle are celebrated in elite museums nationwide, a testament to their enduring quality and elegance. For example, for the modern bride seeking a blend of timeless beauty and lasting value, selecting Towle flatware is more than a choice—it’s the beginning of a treasured family legacy.

A Brief History

Towle Silversmiths traces its roots directly back to Moulton, the inaugural silver operation in the U.S., and is renowned for being what many believe to be the longest continuously running enterprise in the sector. This illustrious family dynasty has seen the art and craft of silversmithing handed down from father to son for over two centuries, ensuring a legacy of unparalleled skill and tradition.

Hampton, New Hampshire, serves as the historical cradle for two pivotal personalities in the realm of silver craftsmanship: William Moulton II and Anthony Frances Towle. Originating from a lineage that planted roots in Hampton in 1637 with an English settler establishing a farm, Moulton embarked on his own journey at the tender age of 18. He ventured to Newbury, Massachusetts, where he engaged in general trade with a particular interest in silver, laying the foundation for a flourishing business that would span five generations.

Joseph Moulton marked the beginning of the family’s foray into silversmithing, a tradition that he passed down to his four sons. While the Moulton lineage included various manual trades such as blacksmithing, by the year 1742, they had established themselves prominently as silversmiths, carving a niche for themselves in this artisan craft.

Towle began his journey in the world of silversmithing as an apprentice under William Moulton IV, who led the family’s esteemed business from 1795 until 1845. During this period, the scope of the business expanded beyond creating silver vessels for churches to include jewelry-making. Eventually, Towle, alongside fellow apprentice William P. Jones, acquired the business. In 1857, the reins of the family empire were passed on, marking the end of the line for the sixth and final Moulton in this distinguished lineage of silversmiths.

Towle Trademark

In 1890, Towle introduced its iconic trademark, featuring an elegantly scripted capital ‘T’ entwined with a lion. Concurrently, Richard Dimes, an English immigrant, made a pivotal impact on the company by expanding its offerings to include a line of hollowware. This new range, comprising exquisite items like soup tureens, teapots, butter dishes, sugar bowls, and creamers, was distinguished by additional layers of silver plating to enhance durability. These luxurious pieces found their clientele among affluent individuals, prestigious hotels, and railroads, which featured them in their dining cars.

The exceptional workmanship of Dimes’ dimes continues to be celebrated to this day. He went on to found a thriving enterprise in Boston, which, after changing ownership multiple times, was ultimately acquired by Reed & Barton in 2009.

Since the 1880s, Towle has unveiled a vast array of distinctive silverware designs, each embodying not just aesthetic allure but also unparalleled quality. Every piece was meticulously crafted, prioritizing the comfort of the user.

In 1939, the Marie Louise pattern became a global standard across U.S. embassies worldwide. The Contour pattern, created by Robert J. King in 1950, stands as a hallmark of post-World War II organic modernism and was featured in the Museum of Modern Art in New York City during the “Good Design” exhibition from 2009 to 2011. Introduced in 1934, the Candlelight pattern, notable for its intricate brocade engraving along the handle, quickly gained immense popularity, prompting competing firms to attempt replicating its design.

The Best Patterns From Silver Superstore

Here at Silver Superstore, we offer Candlelight and dozens of other gorgeous patterns. Here are a few examples:

Towle Chippendale Flatware
Towle Chippendale 5pc Place Setting

Ben Franklin – The lovely shell design perfectly complements a formal table.

Chippendale – This versatile pattern with an arced handle and fluted top is at home in both traditional and contemporary settings. The design mimics the graceful curves of 18th-century Chippendale furniture.

Craftsman – The unadorned surface displays the luster of sterling silver at its finest. Craftsman can be dressed up or down for any occasion.

Towle French Provincial 5-piece place setting in sterling silver.
Towle French Provincial

French Provincial – The fiddle-shaped handle is adorned with understated scroll work. French Provincial debuted in 1948, offering a simpler version of another Towle Silversmiths classic, Old Master.

Towle Old Newbury Flatware
Towle Old Newbury Flatware

Old Newbury – This design is a nod to wealthy 1880s residents of Boston’s historic Newbury Street. The beaded border and tiny carving on the handle suggest refinement rather than opulence.

Towle Queen Elizabeth Sterling Place Setting
Towle Queen Elizabeth Sterling Place Setting

Queen Elizabeth – A delicate floral motif makes this flatware truly regal, but it’s not too ornate for a casual brunch. Queen Elizabeth I debuted in 1970, and has been a very popular pattern since.

Make your selection even more special with a monogram. It’s as easy as adding the engraving service to your shopping cart.

Towle Silversmiths embodies a legacy that is unparalleled in the realm of fine silver craftsmanship. Through its centuries-long journey from the hands of the pioneering Moulton family to the innovative designs that continue to captivate modern audiences, Towle has firmly established itself as a beacon of quality, tradition, and artistic excellence. The stories of its iconic patterns, the enduring appeal of its pieces in prestigious museums, and the cherished role it plays in the creation of family heirlooms all underscore Towle’s unmatched position in the silver industry. As we reflect on the rich history and the timeless elegance encapsulated in every Towle creation, it’s clear that choosing Towle is not just about selecting silverware; it’s about embracing a heritage that will be admired and valued for generations to come.