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TITLE
John Fraser, Inverness silversmith (36 of 39)
EXTERNAL ID
GB1796_SINCLAIR_SILVERSMITH_36
PLACENAME
Inverness
OLD COUNTY/PARISH
INVERNESS: Inverness and Bona
PERIOD
1970s
CREATOR
John Fraser
SOURCE
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
ASSET ID
2265
KEYWORDS
jewellery
jewelry
craftsman
craftsmen
metalwork
silversmiths
audio

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John Fraser, an Inverness silversmith, served his apprenticeship in the 1930s with Medlock and Craik, watchmakers and jewellers at 6 Bridge Street, Inverness. The firm later had premises in Exchange Place, and Queensgate.

In this audio extract from the 1970s, Mr Fraser recalls the changes that took place in the jewellery trade which eventually led to mass production. The photograph, courtesy of Inverness Museum & Art Gallery (IMAG), is of John Fraser's silver hallmark.

'Just prior to the war, about 1939, 1940, and the change had started to take place - the change had taken place long before that but on a much slower - the process was much slower. And it wasn't so much that the price of the metal was going up like gold, silver, what have you, that wages were going up. Wages weren't going up, wages were very, very low in our trade. The difference, in fact, was that there were fewer people beginning to come into the trade and a lot of the craftsmen were old, you know, and they were dying off, and nobody was replacing them. So that, here you had events where a lot of people who had been making up before had stopped making up.

You got a lot of things that weren't mass produced beginning to become semi-mass produced and then eventually they became mass produced. So the article that originally used to be made by hand - and you'll hear people say, you know, 'I remember a day when we used to make that in the workshop' - we're buying it in now, and that was another part of the change that took place'

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John Fraser, Inverness silversmith (36 of 39)

INVERNESS: Inverness and Bona

1970s

jewellery; jewelry; craftsman; craftsmen; metalwork; silversmiths; audio

Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

Bill Sinclair Audio: John Fraser, Silversmith

John Fraser, an Inverness silversmith, served his apprenticeship in the 1930s with Medlock and Craik, watchmakers and jewellers at 6 Bridge Street, Inverness. The firm later had premises in Exchange Place, and Queensgate. <br /> <br /> In this audio extract from the 1970s, Mr Fraser recalls the changes that took place in the jewellery trade which eventually led to mass production. The photograph, courtesy of Inverness Museum & Art Gallery (IMAG), is of John Fraser's silver hallmark.<br /> <br /> 'Just prior to the war, about 1939, 1940, and the change had started to take place - the change had taken place long before that but on a much slower - the process was much slower. And it wasn't so much that the price of the metal was going up like gold, silver, what have you, that wages were going up. Wages weren't going up, wages were very, very low in our trade. The difference, in fact, was that there were fewer people beginning to come into the trade and a lot of the craftsmen were old, you know, and they were dying off, and nobody was replacing them. So that, here you had events where a lot of people who had been making up before had stopped making up.<br /> <br /> You got a lot of things that weren't mass produced beginning to become semi-mass produced and then eventually they became mass produced. So the article that originally used to be made by hand - and you'll hear people say, you know, 'I remember a day when we used to make that in the workshop' - we're buying it in now, and that was another part of the change that took place'