The tray is silver plate and comes with the name King Francis and was meant to go along with the Francis I pattern. Tray has been used once and has been stored under saran wrap, 3M silver strips, and it's in superb condition per photos posted here. Each of the five sterling pieces is in mint condition: no dings, no unworking hinges, no dents. Each has been carefully used like twice, and about every 2 years we have used silver liquid cleaner on the pieces, along with the polishing mitts. Each piece has been stored inside the blue cloth silver bags, with the 3M paper strips to absorb any air impurities.
Set is stored inside vault with temp and humidity controls. I assure you that there are no bad surprises here.
Set looks today like it did in 1979. Also important, there was never any monogram put onto any of the sterling pieces. Also know that each piece has the sterling hallmark on the underside; the King Francis I tray is hallmarked King Francis showing that it's silver plate and compatible with Francis I. Again, no monogram on tray. I've taken numerous photos of each piece, and the sterling stamp under each of the five items.
If you would like more photos on any particular item, I can provide. Total weight of this set is about 159.8 ounces of sterling silver at 92.5% purity. If you are searching just for silver bullion, I recommend you consider Englehard bars.This set is just too outstanding to be considered for melt value. As you probably know, Reed & Barton no longer makes this set, and company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in Feb 2015.
They were acquired by The Lenox Company. The collectibility of original R&B sets should escalate over time. In closing, this is one superb set from 1979. Set continues to be stored in vault and awaits the new owner. The item "Francis I Sterling Tea Set by Reed & Barton, original owner, mint, superb" is in sale since Sunday, June 7, 2020.
This item is in the category "Antiques\Silver\Sterling Silver (.925)\Tea/Coffee Pots & Sets". The seller is "wiz707" and is located in Winter Garden, Florida. This item can be shipped to United States.