Temporary Special Exhibit: Silversmiths of Olde Mobile

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Date(s) - April 25, 2018
All Day

Historic Oakleigh House Museum

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Featuring beautifully crafted antique silver, dating from the 1830s to early 1900s. Featured artisans include James Conning, the L’Hommedieu Brothers, Charles White, and more.   Silversmith Biography: James Conning James Conning was born in New York in 1815 and first worked as a New York silversmith circa 1840.  In his mid-twenties, however, Conning left the North and relocated to Mobile, Alabama, where he set up shop as a jeweler.  The “adopted Southerner” first appeared in the official Directory for the City of Mobile in 1842, advertising himself as a jeweler and silversmith at 26 Dauphin Street.  By all accounts, Conning quickly adopted the norms and customs of the South, even serving as an orderly sergeant in the Washington Light Infantry during the Mexican War of 1845.  An astute businessman, Conning’s so-called “jewelry” business quickly prospered by evolving into a military supply store.  Accordingly, coterminous with the War with Mexico Conning’s shop offered for sale a wide array of military equipment to include swords.   When the Mexican War ended, Conning’s military sales continued to flourish with regular sales to the United States military, various State militia forces, and private buyers.  By 1856, Conning had firmly established himself as a respected retail dealer, importer, and even manufacturer of all things military to include swords.   For more information: https://www.historicoakleigh.com/temporary-exhibit