These tongs are plain with a shell bowl, nothing very spectacular. They are marked with the "JO" maker's mark and another mark that appears to be that of Andrew Wilkie. They have the Edinburgh hallmark. James Orr is identified as first being mentioned in 1815, last 1820. The Edinburgh mark is curious as Greenock work was supposed to have been sent to Glasgow from 1819. If these tongs are prior to 1819 (and they are likely to be) then they were clearly marked in Edinburgh. We know that James Orr is usually identified with Greenock marks, the anchor and/or the Green Oak. The Andrew Wilkie mark may be a clue. Andrew Wilkie was an Edinburgh silver-smith working from 1812. It is therefore quite possible that these tongs were made (and hallmarked) in Edinburgh by Andrew Wilkie and then James Orr bought them for retail.

Pictures are supplied by kind permission of Bob Gutsell.

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