Thomas Gilpin 1739- 1777

Gilbert had deeply hurt the Langley name and stolen goods from customers (£20,000). The event to save the shop was the lowly apprentice. Thomas Gilpin who had been bought by Haldanby for £40 was now the executor of his will and was in charge of finding a buyer for the disgraced store.

He kept the shop running and in 1739 ownership of it was transferred to him. Thomas Gilpin lived a quiet life, but he is credited as one of the masters of silver. One must imagine, he was a hardworking lad from nowhere and became a shop owner and master craftsman. He was everything Gilbert was not.

FACTS

  • Father: Robert Gilpin
  • Mother: Ester Gilpin
  • Born/christened: 25th Sept 1692
  • Baptised: 13 march 1705 , Hockliffe,Bedford,England
  • Lived/employment: Silversmith, apprentice to Haldanby
  • Married: Margaret Gilpin
  • Children: Richard
  • Died: 1779

It is fair to say that his artwork, skill, and trustworthiness brought the business back to its previous standing in London. He died in 1780, having run the store for over 40 years and becoming a master of the Rocco style, his work is still for sale at Christies.

Rococo Style:

Hallmarked -T.G – 1740-

“Renowned 18th century English silversmith Thomas Gilpin, regarded as one of the great Rococo silversmiths and a contemporary of Paul de Lamerie, created this highly important silver epergne. A lasting symbol of dining elegance and social status for over 300 years, the crafting of an epergne was considered to be the truest test of skill for a silversmith. The quality and workmanship of this grand example make it clear why the epergne was considered much more than a dining accessory, but rather a status symbol of influence and taste”

Royal Banquets: expert from Goldsmith, Silversmiths and there hallmarks 1859

Thomas Gilpin, goldsmith, of Lincoln’s Inn Gate, entered his name at the Hall, 2nd July 1739. ” The grand service of plate which graced the Royal table, at the banquet given by Sir Samuel Fludyer at the Mansion House on Lord Mayor’s Day 1761, which the King and Queen honoured with their presence, was made new for the occasion by Mr. Gilpin, with whom the City exchanged a quantity of old plate for the new.” {Old English Plate, by W. I. Cripps.)

Hockleffe Parish:

Gilpin coat of arms

“The family of Gilpin, though no longer resident in this parish, has been connected with it from the 17th century. Robert Gilpin was rector here at his death in 1641, and monumental brasses in the parish church give a descent from him from father to son for four generations, the list terminating with Richard Gilpin, who died in 1841. (fn. 60) Mr. Peter Gilpin of Kilcullen (co. Kildare), the representative of the family, still owns Hockliffe Grange. ”

A History of the County of Bedford: Volume 3. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1912.

Documents

Apprenticeship documents: Master Haldanby.

Will of Thomas Gilpin

4 March 1780 Thomas Gilpin of Saint Clement Danes in the County of Middlesex Esquire will proved at London. One of his bequest to Margaret Pinner otherwise Pinder commonly called Margaret Gilpin was his dwelling house in Horcliffe. Among other things, she was given the use of his pew at Horcliffe. Another of his bequests was lands tenements tythes and heridiments and etc in the Counties of Bedford Bucks and Middlesex to his reputed son Richard Pinner otherwise Pinder commonly called Richard Gilpin. Reference:

TNA PROB 11/1062/207