American Silversmiths

Levi Steele
Sara Van Benthuysen
James P. Steele


Family Links


1. Sarah Ann Abbe

James P. Steele
  • Born: 19 Jul 1812, Albany NY
  • Marriage (1): Sarah Ann Abbe on 6 Oct 1833
  • Died: 21 Mar 1893, Rochester NY

  General notes:


  Events in his life were:

  • Alternate Mark used on wholesale goods

  • He was a partner in 1834-1869 with George Hocknell in Rochester NY as STEELE & HOCKNELL, listed in the 1838 city directory on Clinton Street. 4
  • Advertised in the Rochester Gazette (Rochester NY), 5 Sep 1834, announcing, for STEELE & HOCKNELL a "new silver establishment" at the corner of North Clinton and Main Street.
  • Printed circular with manuscript notes to WHEELER & BROOKS
    Private Collection

    Rochester, Sept 29, 1834
    Mr. Wheeler & Brooks
    We send you the following List of Prices for Silver Work.
    Table Forks,$10.50per dozen.
    Dessert Forks,9.00do
    Soup Ladles,2.25each
    Syllabub Ladles,1.12do
    Sauce or Butter Ladles,0.75do
    Cream Ladles,basket,3.75per dozen.
    doheels and tips,3.75do
    dotips only,3.50do
    Gravy Spoons,1.25each
    Table Spoons,basket to 24 oz.5.25per dozen.
    dodo, above 24 oz.5.50do
    doheels and tips, to 24 oz.5.00do
    dodo, above 24 oz.5.50do
    dotips only, to 24 oz.4.75do
    dodo, above 24 oz.5.12do
    doplain, to 24 oz.4.50do
    dodo, above 24 oz.4.75do
    Dessert Spoons,basket to 12 oz.3.50per dozen.
    dodo, above 12 oz.3.75do
    doheels and tips, to 12 oz.3.25do
    dodo, above 12 oz.3.50do
    dotips only, to 12 oz.3.12do
    dodo, above 12 oz.3.38do
    doplain, to 12 oz.3.00do
    dodo, above 12 oz.3.25do
    Tea Spoonsbasket, to 7 1-2 oz.2.50 25do
    dodo above 7 1-2 oz.2.50do
    doheel and tips, to 6 oz.2.00do
    dodo 7 and 8 oz.2.25do
    dodo above 8 oz.2.50do
    dotips only, to 6 oz.1.94do
    dodo 7 and 8 oz.2.06do
    dodo above 8 oz.2.25do
    doplain, to 6 oz.1.85do
    dodo 7 and 8 oz.1.97do
    dodo above 8 oz.2.97do
    Sugar Tongschased claws,0.88per pair
    dobasket or shell, chased claws1.00do
    doplain shell bowls,0.72do
    dobasket shell bowls,0.84do
    Salt and Mustard Spoons same as light Teas.

    Our work we make double shouldered; silver equal to dollars, for which we charge $1.20 per oz. and allow $1.15 per oz. for silver. We also manufacture Fish, Dessert and butter knives, and almost all articles in the Silver Line. Our factory is on the corner of Main and Clinton Streets.

    Respectfully yours,
    Steel & Hocknell.

    — page two —

    Rochester Dec 16th, 1834

    Mr. D. Wheeler -- Sir, we shall
    expect you here on friday or saturday
    as the spoons will be done. If you
    have wrote
    [sic] we have not recieved your


    Steele & Hocknell

  • He was a partner in 1835-1838 with John G. Crocker in Rochester NY as STEELE & CROCKER (not to be confused with the Hartford firm of STEELE & CROCKER). 18
  • He worked in 1839-1880 as a silversmith in Rochester NY
    Listed in the 1838 city directory as such. In 1866 he advertised as a spoon maker in Poole's Building, rear of 3 Buffalo Street, near the Main Street Bridge, where he offered "old spoons made over". By 1869, he was located in the Rochester House Block, which was destroyed by fire on 4 April 1869, in which he suffered losses exceeding $600.00. 4
  • He appeared on the 1850 census taken at Rochester NY, listed as a silversmith.
  • He appeared on the 1860 census taken at Rochester NY, listed as a silversmith.

  • Advertised in the Rochester City Directory (Rochester NY), 1870,
  • He appeared on the 1870 census taken at Rochester NY, listed as a silversmith.
  • He appeared on the 1880 census taken at Rochester NY, listed as a silversmith.

James married Sarah Ann Abbe on 6 Oct 1833. (Sarah Ann Abbe was born on 13 Oct 1814 in Enfield CT.)

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