Those of us that follow everything Laurent Clerc have been considerably bummed that we have not been able to find things out about Laurent and Eliza’s children and grandchildren. We assume that Laurent came to America not only on a mission to teach sign language but because his prospects of finding a relationship, a wife, was highly unlikely in France. And children are one’s legacy and we are so proud of them.
And who would have thought we would find this little girl's heirloom. So when we learn new things about these offspring we get really excited. So imagine you are cleaning out your silver and scanning your immediate and distant family for a home for these family heirlooms when you come across what appears to be a corn silver baby spoon. (Coin silver is an alloy of 90% silver and 10% copper). And to boot the initials on it are E.V.C or none other than Laurent and Eliza’s oldest daughter, Elizabeth Victoria Clerc, all grown up. And now, thanks to the generous gift of Kathy Harms, 3x great granddaughter, we have this baby spoon and also a photograph of Elizabeth as a mother. Here she is with her own baby, Charlotte Beers.
And we have the initials of the silversmith as well. It appears to be William Leonard Pitkin (http://www.americansilversmiths.org/makers/silversmiths/89588.htm).
But…if that is so he was born 10 years after Elizabeth and unless he was very good at silversmithing at a young age, this spoon did not grace Elizabeth’s mouth. Maybe Charlotte’s. We believe for the time being that it was a gift from someone in Hartford (hint: Laurent and Eliza?) sometime later in life, perhaps to complete her silver set collection? Another mystery to be solved. What a beautiful find. Thank you Kathy.
And now this new Clerc family item rests in the Cogswell Heritage House (https://www.asd-1817.org/about/history--cogswell-heritage-house) on the campus of The American School for the Deaf. Worth a visit to connect with Jean, Brad and an amazing 207 year history. Elizabeth’s spoon will rest close by the recent acquisition of Adele Raverot Clerc’s silver (https://www.laurentclerc.org/post/the-adele-raverot-clerc-s-sterling-flatware) a gift of Beth Crawford, close friend of Adele’s son, Francis Clerc Ogden of Wilton, CT.