Decorative ironwork may be seen all around the city of Charleston, South Carolina in balconies, gates, stair railings, vents, boot scrapes, and decorative panels and finials. The city’s ironwork, as it graces houses, churches and civic structures, is undeniably one of its greatest architectural treasures. The oldest remaining ironwork in the city dates to the Revolutionary War period, although ironwork balconies appeared on Charleston houses as early as 1739. This early iron is wrought iron; iron which has been molded and pounded into shape by a blacksmith using a forge, anvil and hammer. Wrought ironwork of the 18th and 19th centuries features scrolls, fleur-de-lis, leaf and flower patterns, spears and wiggletails. The intricate scroll designs are a tribute to the skill of artisans in the past who wrought beauty from the iron in their forges. These clean, distinct lines show as well in jewelry as they did in the decorative ironwork of the South in the 18th and 19th centuries. The pieces in this sterling silver collection are reminiscent of that ironwork.

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