Asprey Pocket Barometer
Asprey Pocket Barometer. A wonderful pocket Barometer by Asprey of London. A compensated Barometer complete with semi-circular temperature gauge. Housed in what I think is a crocodile skin over wood case with a sliver hallmarked hinge.
In full working order and a rare item
Asprey was established in England in Mitcham, Surrey, in 1781. Founded as a silk printing business by William Asprey, it soon became a luxury emporium. In 1841, William Asprey’s elder son Charles went into partnership with a stationer located on London’s Bond Street. In 1847, the family broke with this partner and moved into 167 New Bond Street, the premises Asprey occupies today.
From its central London location, Asprey advertised ‘articles of exclusive design and high quality, whether for personal adornment or personal accompaniment and to endow with richness and beauty the table and homes of people of refinement and discernment.’ An early speciality was dressing cases. Asprey crafted traditional cases and designs, mostly in leather, suitable for the new style of travel ushered in by railways. The main competitors at the time were H.J. Cave & Sons. Asprey was recognized for its expertise when it won honourable mention for its dressing cases at the International Exhibition of 1862, but it ultimately lost out to its rivals, H.J. Cave & Sons, in both 1862 & 1867.
The company consolidated its position through acquisitions. In 1859, Asprey absorbed Edwards, a maker of dressing cases and holder of a Royal Warrant. Soon after the merger, Asprey would lose this warrant. The company also purchased the Alfred Club at 22 Albemarle Street, which backed on to the New Bond Street store and meant that Asprey now had entrances on two of London’s most fashionable streets.