St. Tammany Silver & Gold

Gold & Silver of Louisiana

Archives January 2017

History of Diamond Engagement Rings

A diamond engagement ring is a widely accepted tradition in western countries to celebrate commitment as two individuals prepare to enter into a marriage. This tradition has a long, yet very interesting history to become what it is today.

The history of engagement rings can be accurately traced back to ancient times to the Roman Era. During this time, the Romans believed that the ring finger on the left hand had a vein that lead straight to the heart. This started the tradition of giving a betrothal ring to a bride-to-be to show affection, but the ring did not always mean a rite to marriage. The rings given were very plain. The bride-to-be was given a gold ring to wear in public and an iron ring to wear around the house while performing various household duties.

During the time of the Middle Ages, these rings began to be decorated with sapphires and rubies. While the ring is still relatively simple, these precious stones added a new dimension that would lead to the diamond engagement ring as we know it today. Pope Innocent III declared a mandatory waiting period between engagement and a wedding ceremony during the Middle Ages. These rings became an even more important role to signify commitment during the process.

The first well-documented use of a diamond engagement ring occurred in 1477 as the Archduke Maximilian of Austria presented his marriage proposal to Mary of Burgundy. This occurrence spurred on other royal and elite citizens to propose with a diamond, as diamonds were rare and signified wealth, strength, and fortitude. The word diamond comes from the Greek word, adamas, which means “unbreakable” and “unconquerable.”

The DeBeers Company opened up diamond mines in Africa, and diamonds began to become more accessible. During the early 1900’s the diamond market took a big hit as demand decreased around the time of WWI and the Great Depression. To counter the decrease in demand, the DeBeers Company created a powerful marketing campaign showcasing celebrities wearing diamonds, and diamond sales increased by over 50% within a three year span.

These aggressive, yet wildly successful marketing campaigns were a major contributor to carrying on the tradition of giving a diamond engagement ring. The diamond engagement ring is now recognized around the world as being a symbol of commitment, love, and marriage. Gold & Silver of Louisiana buys and sells diamond engagement rings in Mandeville, Covington, and St. Tammany Parish.

Sterling Silver Flatware History

Sterling silver is the whitest of all metals. The precious metal is extremely lustrous when highly polished and has many different applications in medicine, fashion, energy, technology, and dining. Sterling silver flatware, in particular, has been a way for dinner hosts to showcase wealth and affluence at parties and gatherings. While sterling silverware is not as popular as it once was in the past, it is still used today to transform dinner parties and events into formal, elegant occasions.

Brief History

Sterling silver flatware was first introduced in the 1840’s, and these flatware sets were most prevalent from the 1870’s to the 1940’s. The flatware was used for dinner parties and elegant events. These gatherings often included anywhere from 5 – 18 courses, so guests could expect these events to be very long and extravagant. With each course, a new flatware piece would be introduced and used for the specific purpose of that course.

Cake Server in Covington.

Many of the sterling flatware sets included many specialized serving utensils like cake knives, pie servers, jelly servers, tomato servers, oyster forks, and pickle servers. Outside of sterling silver flatware, there are uses for sterling in decorative pieces around the table including cups, goblets, candlesticks, pitchers, napkin rings, serving trays, and more. The list goes on and on as there are endless specialized utensils for all dining needs and occasions.

The culture during the Victorian era was to always use a utensil when eating food, and it was not considered polite to touch food with your hands. This idea expanded the notion to showcase wealth, affluence, and status with all the silverware. The popularity of these sets began to dwindle as the cost of silver production increased. Another contributing factor was that the pace of life became much quicker. The sterling silverware and tableware required extensive time to clean, and big dinner gatherings became common place for formal occasions only. These flatware and tableware sets are not often used today, but people who own them still like to use them from time to time for nice, formal occasions.

Today, the pace of life only seems to be increasing as life becomes more on-the-go than ever before. People just aren’t using their once popular sets like they used to. These factors contribute to the flood of clients that we receive at Gold & Silver of Louisiana who are looking to sell sterling flatware and tableware. Our St. Tammany clients see a great opportunity to get cash for their unwanted and old flatware sets. We provide a safe and friendly environment for our customers. Our trained professionals are equipped to answer all your questions and provide valuable information when selling sterling silverware.

Rare and Numismatic Coins

Numismatic refers to the study or collection of coins and currencies. Numismatic coins are often not produced in modern times and carry a premium much higher than the value of the precious metal, whether silver or gold, due to the rarity and collectible value of the coin. Numismatic coins aren’t always rare coins, but often times they are due to low mintage dates and circumstances surrounding the era or time frame of minting. Many numismatic coins are graded and encapsulated by professionals at NGC, PCGS, and ANACS that not only verify the authenticity, but also provide condition grading for the coin. Numismatic coins are not often bought for investment purposes, but for collectible purposes as you own an exciting piece of history.

Rare, Numismatic Coins in Covington

Unlike many coin dealers and precious metal buyers who try to exploit the ignorance of their customers, we treat our clients with respect and offer very fair and competitive pricing for all rare and numismatic coins. As a premier coin dealer in Covington, we always do our best to provide valuable information when handling with your rare coins. Our trained and knowledgeable coin experts are ready to answer and assist you with any questions you may have regarding your numismatic coins. If you are looking to buy numismatic coins, beware of unscrupulous behavior and ignorant sellers claiming their coins are rare, or key dates. It is imperative to do your own research to determine an accurate price for items you wish to buy. Also, it’s important to know that just because a coin is old does NOT mean it is numismatic or rare. There are plenty of old coins that were minted by the millions, and they don’t really trade above their silver or gold weight unless they receive a high grade by the aforementioned grading professionals.

Numismatic coins do not include coins that are considered bullion. Bullion coins include American Eagles, Canadian Maples, Krugerrands, and 90% junk silver, which are used for the purpose of investment. Numismatic coins include, but are not limited to certain Morgan & Peace Silver dollars, pre-1933 gold eagles, British Sovereigns, Swiss 20 francs, and more. These coins may or may not be encapsulated and graded. However, a coin does not need to be graded for it to be considered numismatic.

If you are looking to buy or sell rare numismatic coins, please stop by our location in Covington. Gold and Silver of Louisiana takes pride in offering clients top dollar for all coins. We provide a safe, friendly environment for you to browse, buy, and sell coins. We have a wide variety of numismatic coins ranging from BC era to modern times.