My stack of research material has increased as well.
She had her own numbers and cataloging system, and some objects still have their assigned numbers attached, though the majority have fallen off.
The catalogs contain useful information like how much Irene originally paid for the salt dish, a brief description, and sometimes a page reference. Unfortunately I have no idea what book she was referencing, which is a bit frustrating! Sometimes she includes information about dates, styles, and materials that I didn't know, but for the most part her descriptions match mine. It is nice to have some evidence of provenance though!
I've also been learning a bit about silver hallmarks. Any sterling silver object that is to be sold commercially is stamped with a mark indicating the purity of the silver, and may include other marks such as what city it was from, the date, and the silversmith's maker's mark.
|Here is an example|
Unfortunately the maker's mark on this object in indecipherable (they usually are), but knowing where it came from and having a general idea of what year is very rewarding. It's making discoveries like this that keep me interested in the salt dishes!