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Steppes Hill Farm Antiques Newsletter #102 - March 2020
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Butt Markers




A collection of antique silver Shooting Butt Markers or Place Finders

The numbered pegs are randomly inserted into the case, number side down. Each shooter then takes their turn to draw a peg and the revealed number shows the shooting position (butt) that they will use for the first drive. They then move up an agreed number of positions (usually 2 or 3) for each subsequent drive. Place finders were very popular in the early 20th century and are making a resurgence today, with many shooters looking out for good antique examples.



Peg: A position on a drive where a gun will stand. Pegs will usually be marked with wooden stakes in the ground and numbered. There will generally be 8 to 10 pegs positioned in a field or set area of land which the birds will be pushed towards.

Peg Draw: In the morning on a shoot day guns will choose their peg at random. This will give them the peg number that they will start on. Each shoot is different, but you will generally move up or down 2 numbers for the next drive. For example, if you start on Peg 4 on drive one, you will stand at Peg 6 on drive two and Peg 8 on drive three etc.

 


 

The use of numbered pegs and Butt Markers is only necessary for formal "driven shooting". Up until the end of the 17th century, birds were traditionally shot when sitting perched or on the ground, as well as being netted. In the early 18th century development of smooth bore firearms that could fire shot rather than solid balls allowed the occasional flying target to be brought down.

The double barrelled breech loading Shotgun arrived during the mid 19th century, and enabled more accuracy and faster loading. Birds were initially hunted by walking towards them randomly  or waiting to ambush them from a hide. The art of ‘driven shooting’, where a team of "beaters" is employed to push the game towards a line of standing guns became popular in the late 19th century and was the preserve of the wealthy and landed classes. It was also popular with the Royal family. The Prince, later King Edward VII, had neither the shape nor the temperament for the hunting field. The organised driven shoot was ideal and its pleasures were admirably exclusive and wonderfully extravagant!


Shooting at Peg No 6



Walking to the next drive where your peg number will change

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Victorian Silver Double-Sided "Castle-Top" Card Case Kenilworth Castle Ruins & Warwick Castle Edwardian Novelty Silver Artists' Palette Paint Box Edwardian Novelty Silver Lion Pin Cushion Victorian Scottish Silver & Citrine Vinaigrette - Edinburgh Castle
Pair Victorian Novelty Cast Silver Peppers - Punch & Judy Edwardian Silver Cards Box / Trumps Marker / Bridge Score Card George III Silver 'Hand' Caddy Spoon George V Novelty Silver Gilt 'Flambeau' Dog Menu Holder After Benjamin Rabier

Once again I am pleased to be able to update the site this month with over 30 new items of stock and some highlights include; a rare Victorian Silver Double-Sided "Castle-Top" Card Case depicting Kenilworth Castle Ruins & Warwick Castle, an Edwardian Novelty Silver Artists' Palette Paint Box, a rare Edwardian Novelty Silver Lion Pin Cushion, an unusual Victorian Scottish Silver & Citrine Vinaigrette carved with Edinburgh Castle, a fine quality pair Victorian Novelty Cast Silver Peppers depicting Punch & Judy, an Edwardian Silver Cards Box / Trumps Marker / Bridge Score Card, a George III Silver 'Hand' Caddy Spoon and George V Novelty Silver Gilt 'Flambeau' the Dog Menu Holder After Benjamin Rabier.

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I do hope that you will find this Newsletter informative and helpful and will allow us send it to you on a regular basis. I would welcome any feedback you may have, both positive and negative.

Covid-19

Dear Valued Customer,

Thank you for your continued loyalty and support, especially during these uncertain and difficult times. Our on-going response to COVID-19 is anchored on following Government guidelines very closely and whilst understanding that there are other many more important things going on in the world, we felt that the time was right to update you on our current situation:

For the time being, we can not now entertain clients on a face-to-face basis, however our online store steppeshillfarmantiques.com is still very much operational, and at the time of writing we are still able to dispatch goods, either by Royal Mail or Courier,  both to the UK and overseas (*Please note that shipping to some some countries may now be delayed or disrupted - for the latest situation please see the Royal Mail web site: https://www.royalmail.com/coronavirus?iid=HP_M1_CORONAVIRUS

Whilst the majority of auction houses are now closing, some are continuing with online only sales and our intention is to follow this strategy. Please keep us bookmarked...!

Take care of yourselves, your loved ones and your communities.

On behalf of all at Steppers Hill Farm Antiques, our very best wishes and stay safe.

Many Thanks and Kind Regards,

David W.A. Buck.
Steppes Hill Farm Antiques

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Steppes Hill Farm Antiques Ltd · PO Box 608 · Sittingbourne, Kent ME10 9GT · United Kingdom

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