Hunt Button Collecting

Can you help identify this button?

Posted on Wednesday, May 2, 2018
Written by: Firebrand

Can anyone identify this button? One assumption is an early Vale of Lune Harriers, but no-one is sure (yet!) The backmark is the ubiquitous Pitt & Co. 31 Maddox St London W. placing it anywhere between 1895 and 1973 – therefore too late for the Vale of Lune’s first incarnation (1866 – 1888).  It is…

A connoisseur’s collection

Posted on Wednesday, March 21, 2018
Written by: Firebrand

I recently visited a good friend in the US – a keen collector of British hunt buttons and the owner of a superb collection of silver sets. Whilst wishing to remain anonymous he gave me permission to photograph some of the most impressive items.  I’ve chosen to share just three of them Starting with a…

Is you is, or is you ain’t?

Posted on Sunday, February 18, 2018
Written by: Firebrand

In amongst a mixed lot of hunt buttons I bought recently were a number of buttons marked as ‘?’ or with suggestions as to what they might be.  Are they hunt buttons at all I ask?  I thought I’d offer them up for anyone to have a go at identifying. 1-4: Top left. The Duke…

A Few Welsh Wonders

Posted on Monday, February 5, 2018
Written by: Firebrand

Following on from my recent post on rare Irish buttons, I turn now to Wales and offer a few rarities for your information and (hopefully) interest and enjoyment.  Many of you will know that a small but important, annotated collection of Welsh buttons was put together between the mid-1800’s and early 1900’s, and that returned…

Hand-made to order.

Posted on Wednesday, January 31, 2018
Written by: Firebrand

At Peterborough last year I fell into conversation about hand-made buttons with fellow collector Neville Hackett.  I had heard of ‘rustic made’ buttons but had none in the collection.  More than just hand engraving on factory made buttons, we were referring to examples were the button itself is hand made.  Since then two lovely examples…

Gems from the Emerald Isle: A selection of scarce Irish hunt buttons.

Posted on Wednesday, January 17, 2018
Written by: Firebrand

For my first post of 2018 I thought I would offer up a selection of rare buttons, all of which come from Ireland, and most of which are the only known examples.  I will give details on them if much is known, and I will be asking for help in identifying some of them.   The…

Blackened buttons: Mourning or more?

Posted on Sunday, November 12, 2017
Written by: Firebrand

Most, if not all of us will have come across a blackened button at some time, and may have referred to it as a ‘mourning button’.  There has long been debate between the ‘old guard’ of collectors and the more recently involved as to for whose mourning they were produced.  Some say “It’s Queen Victoria…

Tomorrow never dies?

Posted on Saturday, October 14, 2017
Written by: Firebrand

The deeper down the rabbit hole of collecting one goes, the more intriguing the subject can become: variations, backmarks, silver presentation sets, buttons with errors, and more can become ‘side collections’.  I know that a few collectors of hunt buttons also have a  number of the cast metal dies used to stamp out ‘struck raised’…

The Mystery of the ‘Sussex Hunt’ button.

Posted on Wednesday, September 27, 2017
Written by: Firebrand

One of the more well-known reference books to include hunt buttons is Gwen Squire’s ‘Buttons: A guide for collectors‘ – NB by general I mean other than our own fine annual Directory.  Squire’s book illustrates a particular button and refers to it as being for the ‘Sussex Hunt. Now part of the East Sussex and…

Hunting the boar.

Posted on Sunday, September 10, 2017
Written by: Firebrand

From the traditions of the Indian Princely States and earlier, the sporting pig-sticking of British India and ‘the Raj’, and hound driven hunting in Europe we have gained a wonderful history of boar hunting and some magnificent buttons to go with it.  There are many boar hunts whose buttons don’t feature the animal itself, but…