Mary Chawner

Mary Chawner was very much immersed in the silversmithing industry from birth. Her father, William Burwash, was a watchcase maker, and her husband William Chawner II was a spoon maker. Following in the line of her husband’s work, Mary Chawner was a spoon maker herself and continued the business after her husband’s death in 1834. In 1840, Mary entered a partnership with her son-in-law George William Adams, who, after her retirement, managed the business as Chawner & Co., remaining sole partner until 1883. Chawner became one of the most importer manufacturers of spoons and forks in London, their pattern book soon became the reference for the naming of many patterns produced in the Victorian era. Pieces bearing the mark of Mary Chawner are part of the collection of the National Museum of Women in the Arts including: six William IV tablespoons, from 1835; a William IV fish slice, of the same year; a Victorian fish slice, of 1839; and two Victorian dinner forks, also dated 1839.