Prominent American silversmith Samuel Kirk began his manufacturing company in Baltimore, 1815 and would become one of the oldest silverware companies in America. The company carried on under the name S. Kirk & Son or S. Kirk & Sons and Co Sterling or CO or INC independently, until it was bought out in 1979 and became The Kirk Stieff Co. The repoussé style pattern has been in use since the 1800's but the stamps marking each piece can date the pieces to a particular time. There was a lot of confusion about dates for similar looking pieces but a book, published by Kirk & Son called, 'The story of the House of Kirk' explains the story of the first 99 years of the company. Thereafter, records from the revised book, 'The story of the house of Kirk' from their 1965 publication, can be used to date pieces accurately.
This beautiful example of their work is in fine condition and is not monogrammed. The inside markings are stamped S. Kirk & Son Co. 925/1000, which dates this piece from 1896 - 1924. The finely made belt buckle could be used purely as a decorative object or actually worn as a belt. Though true repoussé is a hand made pattern, Kirk made a concerted effort to keep the pattern looking handmade and different dies were used to create this effect. On this earlier piece the rear shows more of the stamping and bumps from the manufacturing process. The entire buckle frame is decorated with an array of finely detailed foliage, flora and flowers and is very impressive. It would be a fine piece to add to your collection of fine antiques.