M. W. Hanck
Matthias William Hanck was born and educated in Chicago. He apprenticed as a jeweler for seven years with R. M. Johnson, and took classes at the Chicago Art Institute. In 1907 he began working at the Kalo Shop, then left in 1910 with another Kalo Shop silversmith, Julius Randahl, to start a company they called the Julmat (taken from the first syllables of their names) that was in operation for just one year. In 1915 Hanck opened his own jewelry shop in Park Ridge.
Hanck soon had enough business to hire several apprentices and his three brothers. In addition to selling retail items, Hanck made objects for the nearby T. C. Shop. The server below, with its pointed handle, resembles many T. C. Shop serving pieces we've seen. Hanck's business, like that of many smaller operations, suffered at the onset of the depression and Hanck ended up working by himself from his home, first in Park Ridge until 1936, and in Chicago afterward.
One of Hanck's trademarks was the use of swooping, curving, almost liquid ornament, giving his pieces a very modern feeling of motion. These decorative elements can be seen here and here in the pins below, and on the sides of the ring.
His shopmark was a curving flower in a flowerpot with an H embedded in the side of the pot:
Mark with logo:
From 1943 to 1955 (when he died), Hanck worked for the Parker Pen Company, where among other things he helped develop iterations of the familiar arrow clip. Hanck is not very well known, which is a shame. Much of his work is very Kalo-like, but certain objects, like the pin below, were extremely modern-looking.
Necklace on paperclip chain, made of three plaques connected with small loop links.
Engraved on back in script is "Ida Fjelde, Osage, Iowa" Main plaque is 1-1/8" H
and 15/32" W on 15" chain. Signed: [flower pot mark with "H" inside]
Pin with pearl. Oxidized background. 2-3/8" L and 7/16" H. Signed: [flower pot mark
with "H" inside] / HAND MADE / M.W. HANCK / PARK RIDGE ILL. / STERLING
Pin, oval, with applied stylized leaves centering a baroque pearl with oxidized background.
2-1/4" W and 9/16" H. Signed: HAND MADE / BY / M.W. HANCK / PARK RIDGE ILL.
Ring, gold, with carved bezel-set coral cameo, applied trillium blossoms top and bottom
with small bezel-set faceted diamond centering the bottom flower, and curving ornament
on both sides. 7/8" H and 11/16" W and 13/16" D. Signed: HANCK MADE
Stickpin with applied trillium blossoms centering an oval bloodstone cabochon.
Oxidized surfaces. 3/4" H on sterling pin 2-1/4" L Signed: HANCK MADE
Server, spade shaped, applied P on handle. 10-1/2" L and 2-7/8" W.
Signed: STERLING / HAND WROUGHT / M. W. HANCK / PARK RIDGE ILL
Serving spoon with geometric pierced end, nice hammering. 10-1/8" L and 2-5/8" W.
Signed: HAND MADE / BY / M. W. HANCK / PARK RIDGE, ILL. / STERLING
Serving fork with rounded end, applied "L" mono, nice hammering. 8-3/16" L and 1-9/16" W.
Signed: M.W. HANCK / PARK RIDGE ILL. / STERLING / [flower pot mark with "H" inside]