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Pair of Warden’s badges

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At a meeting in Guildhall on 29th. February 1876 of the committee arranging the Court Dinner to be held on 22nd. March, it was agreed that the Wardens as well as the Master should be provided with badges to designate their office, and Messrs Emanuel of Portsmouth were asked to  make two “to be delivered without fail on or before 22nd. March”. Perhaps as an incentive, Maurice Emanuel, of 101,High Street,Portsmouth, Jeweller, son of E. Emanuel, Alderman of Portsmouth, was admitted to  the freedom and livery of the Company by redemption on payment of twenty pounds the following day. The Court on 11th. March ratified the decision of the committee, the expense of the badges to be not more than £10:10:0 each.

The badges show theArkin the sea on a wreath of red and white. On the roof of theArkis a dove with a laurel leaf in its mouth – on one badge with the head held horizontally, on the other with the head facing downwards. TheArkis surrounded by the words WORSHIPFUL COMPANY OF SHIPWRIGHTS between two gold ropes joined together at the foot with a reef knot with the date 1380 within it. The whole is surmounted by the City Arms complete with supporters, crest and motto. On the back of each badge is engraved:

 Warden’s Badge

Worshipful Company



George Tatum Esquire


William Broomham Esquire


William S Page Esquire

22nd March 1876

 In 1877 the Company was nearly twice the size it had been two years before, and the number of wardens was increased to four. At a Court meeting at theAlbionon 16th. January 1878, the Master reported “that he had taken it upon himself to order two new Warden’s Badges so that the extra Wardens should be invested this day with an insignia of office”. Fortunately “the  Court unanimously approved of the action of the Master”.

 There is some confusion about the badges in our  possession today. One (17/1876) has “Emanuel of High  Street Portsmouth” on the clasp, and is undoubtedly one of the original pair of 1876. Another (18/1878) does not  have this inscription on the clasp, which is simply  stamped “18ct” and “G K & S” (that is, Kenning), and is presumably one of the second pair of 1878. Two others (028/1908 and 029/1908) have no inscription on the back,  but are hallmarked “18ct atSheffield andLondon 1908”  and stamped “G K & S” and “Kenning & Son,London”. There appears to be no record of new badges in 1908: it is  possible that the old ones were refurbished and  restamped by Kennings.

 The badges are today suspended from dark blue ribbon, and no distinction is made as to which warden wears  which badge.

 (017/1879), (018/1876)

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