Antique BPOE Sterling Silver Match Safe or Vesta Raised Elk Design with Ruby Eye and Blue Enameled Clock By L. Fritsche & Co.
Description: Antique pocket match safe, matchsafe or vesta made of sterling silver. This match safe has an applied Elk's head with an enameled clock within its antlers on a floral design. The Elk has a red ruby eye. The piece has a hinged lid with curved corners and a striker on the bottom. The edge of the match safe on which the lid rests is marked with the word "STERLING" and the L. Fritzsche & Co. mark (the letter "F" within a shield). The inside appears to have a gold wash coloring. The vesta is also monogrammed on the back with what we believe are the letters "JAC". Pleases carefully review the photos presented as they are part and parcel of our description.
Additional Information: The Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE; also often known as the Elks Lodge or simply The Elks) is an American fraternal order founded by Joseph M. Norcross in 1868 originally as a social club in New York City, United states.
Date: Uncertain, but most likely sometime between 1890 and 1910.
Origin: Purchased at an estate auction in Southeastern Pennsylvania.
Size: Measures ~2 1/4" by ~1 7/8" by ~1/4" and weighs ~39 grams.
Maker: L. Fritzsche & Co. Marks: Marked with the word "STERLING" and the L. Fritzsche & Co. mark (the letter "F" within a shield) on the lip of the match safe.
Distinguishing Characteristics - Most Interesting About The Piece: A beautiful and most interesting antique matchsafe. It would make a great addition to your silver box collection, matchsafe, tobacco/smoking, or BPOE Fraternal Order related collection.
Condition: The match safe is in excellent condition with no major problems. The hinged lid works great and the matchsafe has no breaks or repairs. The vesta has one ding to exterior at the bottom left corner which we show in sixth and seventh photos. It also has some minor surface scratches, some soiling, and general wear to the exterior commensurate with the pieces age and utilitarian function. It could use a good cleaning to bring out its full beauty but we leave that to the new owner. Just a great Fraternal Order related piece with a very nice design. Please see photos for additional condition information.