Martha Washington's son, John "Jacky" Parke Custis, and his new wife, Eleanor Calvert, assembled an impressive array of imported English silver soon after they married in 1774. It included twenty-four dessert spoons featuring the Custis crest. This is one of sixteen French spoons made at a later date which descended in the family of Jacky's daughter, Eliza Parke Custis Law. She likely ordered them to supplement her inherited portion of her parents' eighteenth-century wedding silver.

See also dessert spoons, H-4802-H4810, W-445/A-D, F, and W-1468.


Dessert spoon with pointed oval bowl and rounded, downturned handle with faint midrib and plain edges; engraved on obverse of handle with the Custis family crest, the head of an eagle issuing from a wreath.


c. 1809-1819






Overall: 5 1/2 in. x 1 1/8 in. x 5/8 in. (13.97 cm x 2.86 cm x 1.59 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. George R. Goldsborough, Vice Regent for Maryland, 1908


Three hallmarks or stamps on reverse of handle: maker's mark features the letters "E," "P" and "A" surmounted by a pair of crossed spoons with a dot above and below, all in a diamond; official Parisian assay mark for standard silver, 950/1000, featuring the profile of a cock, running right, with the number "1" at lower right, all in a bordered, canted-corner rectangle; Parisian medium excise mark featuring the profile of a helmeted Greek soldier, facing right, in a circle.

Object Number


Colors (Beta)

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