Gilt Buttons…

The first gilt buttons were made in Birmingham during the latter part of the eighteenth century, & produced cost effective way of making buttons look like gold, but without the cost, which made them hugely poplar, this was before the Americans began making gilt buttons by around 1810, I have been told they stole the gilding secret from us brits, which was created by using Five grains of gold per gross (144) of buttons, this was then added to a mixture of mercury, which was then either dipped or brushed on the buttons before being placed in a furnace to cook, I assume that the treble gilt wrote on this button means it was repeated and cooked three times…. IMG_8522 The art of gliding buttons was widely known in the 18th century so I doubt our cousins over the pond did not do to much stealing… The writing on the back of the button ensured that this button was a quality button and not some cheaper version, because of quality issues the button makers guild lobbied Parliament for laws to keep the unscrupulous from gilding buttons with not enough gold; this then led to the required amount of 1/96th of an ounce of gold, to cover a button with the diameter of one inch;

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