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Uploaded on May 27, 2009
Would your favorite ice cream taste better served from a silver bowl like this? John and Marie Louise Mackay [pronounced MACK-ee] must have thought so The bowl is part of their silver dinner service made by Tiffany and Company. The service even had a title: "Dinner and Dessert Service for Twenty-Four Persons." Mackay was an Irish immigrant who struck it rich in 1873 when he discovered the Comstock Lode, the largest silver deposit ever found in Nevada. His wife asked if she could have enough silver to make something, quote, memorable. Well, enough silver turned out to be nearly a ton. That's what Tiffany used to make the twelve hundred and fifty pieces in the service. Two hundred men worked two years to produce it. Each piece features his Mrs. Mackay's initials...M L M...and her family's coat of arms. On this ice cream dish you can see them on opposite sides of the rim. The feet of the dish are elephant trunks. By the way, the inside is gilded with a thin layer of gold. This was one of two ice cream serving dishes in the set. Then there were 24 individual ice cream plates. The luxurious set also included such pieces as celery vases, separate dishes for olives, cheese, and grapes, a chocolate pot, crumb trays, candelabras, and of course knives, forks, and spoons for 24 guests. The Mackay's made their home in Paris, and Mrs. Mackay became famous in European high society for her sumptuous banquets and parties.
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