Gateway Object: Art Deco Handle (Brass)

brass art deco handle with cut out shapes in the bar of handle
brass art deco handle, reverse side with cut out shapes in the bar of handle


Sand-cast, Art Deco inspired swing handle.


From the National Archives’ Board of Trade Records we can tell by that this design is a Newman Brothers’ Registered Design, number ‘RD778321′. It was registered between 13th August 1932 and 24th January 1933.

Newman Brothers produced a range of high-quality Art Deco handles during this period, all of which were registered with the Board of Trade. Unfortunately, they do not appear in any of the surviving Newman Brothers’ catalogues.

It seems Newman Brothers did not have new catalogues printed regularly which meant many of their Registered Designs would have fallen out of fashion between catalogue printings. We assume they couldn’t justify producing updated catalogues for the sake a handful of new designs.

Expert on English coffin furniture Dr Julian Litten has suggested:

“Alternatively, it could be that Newmans destroyed their stock of old catalogues when a new one came out, so as to avoid the possibility of an old one being sent to a client. If that is the case it’s terribly frustrating that they did not keep copies of their former catalogues in their archive.”

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