Lot 187
  • 187

ANONYMOUS SIGNMAKER, EARLY 20TH CENTURY | Opticians Sign for Hills Shop

Estimate
1,200 - 1,800 GBP
Sold
27,500 GBP
bidding is closed

Description

  • Opticians Sign for Hills Shop
  • giltwood
  • 122 by 31cm., 48 by 12¼in.
  • Made circa 1900-20.
carved giltwood, glass and painted paper, together with a black and white photograph of the Hills shop front circa 1920

Provenance

Probably acquired by Edward (Percy) Hills (1874-1939)
thence by descent
until sold June 2000

Catalogue Note

The clock, watch and jewellery business of Hills was established at 74 Friars Street, Sudbury, Suffolk in 1831 by Benjamin Hills (1807-1859), the only surviving son of a Quaker yeoman. The business remained in the same family and in the same building until 2000 and, from the outset, had supplied ‘spectacles to suit all sights’. It is most likely that it was Benjamin’s grandson, Edward (Percy) Hills (1874-1939) who obtained the opticians trade sign in around 1920 and had it mounted on the front of his shop. Percy’s son, Harry Raymond (Ray) Hills (1903-1983) joined his father in partnership and was not only a qualified watchmaker and Fellow of the British Horological Institute but also a qualified optician and a Freeman of the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers. The sign remained on the building until 1938 after which it was kept inside.
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