15 Most Valuable Antiques Salt And Pepper Shakers

Salt and pepper shakers are some of the rarest collectibles that come in pairs. And it makes sense that they do since you’ll always find them on the meal table where folks need to apply salt to food to taste and pepper for spice. Yet, you have to admit that salt and pepper containers are commonplace things.

So you must wonder if anyone is interested in buying them or whether they are worth anything at all. Well, I’m about to demystify the questions by introducing you to the 15 most valuable antique salt and pepper shakers.

Table of Contents

The Top 15 Most Valuable Antique Salt and Pepper Shakers

No.
Name of shakers
Year
Price
1
English Gilt Sterling Salt and Pepper Shakers
19th century
$200
2
Japanese Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers
$200
3
Set of Carved Ivory and Wood Salt and Pepper shakers
$200
4
Egg Shaped Victorian Era Sterling Silver Set Salt and Pepper Shakers
1901
$472.44
5
Antique Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Set
1879
$675
6
Sterling Silver Cruet Set
1864
$1,870.08
7
CF Monroe Mount Washington Salt and Pepper Shakers
1890s
$300
8
Geo IV Silver Gilt Shakers
1825
$914.99
9
Georg Jensen Bernadotte Sterling Salt and Pepper Shakers
1930-1939
$1,250
10
Georg Jensen Silver Pyramid Design Pair
1930
$495
11
Tiffany and Co Vintage Pair Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers
1980s
$500
12
Georg Jensen Acorn Salt and Pepper Shakers Sterling Silver
1945
$1,500
13
Georg Jensen Sterling Silver Acorn Salt and Pepper Shakers No 423B
1950-1959
$428.78
14
Vintage Georg Jensen 925 Sterling Silver Pair of Salt and Pepper Shakers
1950-1959
$1,276.14
15
Vintage Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers
1977
$1,499.47

1. English Gilt Sterling Salt and Pepper shakers

Year: 19th Century

Origin: England

Price: $200

1. English Gilt Sterling Salt and Pepper shakers

This vintage pair of salt and pepper shakers are from 19th century England. Picture the English family who first owned these pepper and salt shakers at their meal table. Picture them seated with their backs straight, faces demure, and the conversation short and about how great the weather looked outside. They probably would love to go to the opera after the meal or the couple could just spend time in the library and read. As they eat they shake some pepper and salt on their food. These ones are valued at $200. They come with a pierced and repousse decoration.

2. Japanese Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper shakers

Year: unknown

Origin: Japan

Price: $200

2. Japanese Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper shakers

These are definitely antique and quite old too. They’re likely from Japanese royalty and very rare. Whatever the case, they are worth more than your ordinary salt and pepper shakers. They meet the criteria for antique: they are old and have sentimental value. From a close look on the invaluable auction website they are in good shape and should get even greater value from collectors as time goes by. They are valued at $200.

3. Set of Carved Ivory and Wood Salt and Pepper shakers

Year: 19th-century

Origin: Africa

Price: $200

3. Set of Carved Ivory and Wood Salt and Pepper shakers

This pair of rare vintage shakes has been difficult to date. Whether this makes them even more valuable remains to be seen. However, a professional suggests they date somewhere in-between the 19th century. They are made from ivory in the middle and wood on both extremes—the top and the bottom. They might have come from cultures where the folks value beautiful wood and bone art. These ones have what looked like flowers carved into their bodies. They are worth $200. 

4. Egg Shaped Victorian Era Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

Year: 1901

Origin: England

Price: $472.44

4. Egg Shaped Victorian Era Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

This antique set of four salt and pepper shakers comes in a box, straight out of 1901 Birmingham. The English sure knew how to make shakers and keep them royal. It measures 4.5 cm in height and 3cm in diameter. They were made by English silversmiths Hilliard and Thomason. This is a collector’s delight should you choose to buy them. They are valued at $472.44.

5. Antique Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Set

Year: 1879

Origin: United States

Price: $675

5. Antique Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Set

These are possibly close to 200 hundred years old. They are a very rare and valuable set of salt and pepper shakers from around the year 1879. The shakers are designed with a vintage floral repousse and come with little legs for them to stand with. They are from Jenkins and Jenkins in Baltimore. It comes with a salt cellar made up of the same design but was actually made by a different company called S. Kirk and Son in 1828. This set is valued at $675.

6. Sterling Silver Cruet Set

Year:1864

Origin: United Kingdom

Price: $1,870.08

6. Sterling Silver Cruet Set

This is a set from the Victorian era. It is impressive and has fine collectibles value. They are designed like barrels. It consists of pepper and mustard shakers. The mustard shaker can of course be used as a pepper shaker. The body is designed with bands of toledo decoration. The frame is designed with twisted wire work receivers. They are worth $1,870.08.

7. CF Monroe Mount Washington Salt and Pepper Shakers

Year: 1890s

Origin: United States

Price: $300

7. CF Monroe Mount Washington Salt and Pepper Shakers

These are a very rare set of salt and pepper shakers from the 1890s. They originate out of Washington. They sort of look all American in a way. You can tell from the smooth design of the body and the metal cap that they’re not English yet they are old. They come with paintings of a cat and a house. They are a homely pair and valued at $300.

8. Geo IV Silver Gilt Shakers

Year: 1825

Origin: United Kingdom

Price: $914.99

8. Geo IV Silver Gilt Shakers

Edward Barton created this beautiful set of salt and pepper shakers in 1825. This vintage set comes with embroidered bodies and caps. They are from an era when people valued precious metals in their home articles no matter how small those things were. These ones have floral designs and round pedestals to stand on. They are worth $914.99.

9. Georg Jenson Bernadotte Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

Year: 1930-1939

Origin: Denmark

Price: $1,250

9. Georg Jenson Bernadotte Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

Don’t be deceived by their appearance, this pair of salt and pepper shakers are actually antique. They look futuristic because they are made with silver cases and have designs on them like many other shakers like them. They are designed by Georg Jensen and likely originated in Denmark. They are worth $1,250.

10. Georg Jensen Silver Pyramid Design Pair

Year: 1930

Origin: Denmark

Price: $495

10. Georg Jensen Silver Pyramid Design Pair

Another design pack from Georg Jensen. These two look like they were made in the early 2000s but are likely much older. They could be from the early to the mid-19th century. And they are also from Denmark. These silver balls sit on round pedestals so they don’t roll off the table when not in use. They are completely made of silver. They have a tiny opening at the top where salt and pepper are sprinkled out. They are valued at $495.

11.Tiffany and Co Vintage Pair Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

Year: 1980s

Origin: United States

Price: $597.55

11.Tiffany and Co Vintage Pair Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

This pair of sterling silver shakers were made in Italy by Tiffany in the 1980s. The 2 ¾ pieces are solid silver. They are sure to make a fine and exotic addition to any dinner table, if you’re into shaking salt on food, that is. They are valued well at $597.55 but since they are Tiffany their value should climb in years to come.

12. Georg Jensen Acorn Salt and Pepper Shakers Sterling Silver

Year: 1945

Origin: Denmark

Price: $1,500

11.Tiffany and Co Vintage Pair Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

These shakers are in excellent condition after a long time. They are made by skilled Georg Jensen silversmiths who have polished the pair to fine sheen. Geog Jensen loves to give pepper and salt shakers a peculiar design. We can say he was ahead of his time with some of his designs. This one is shaped like an acorn and seats on a slightly elaborate pedestal, all done in silver. The pair stands at 3.15 inches and 1.58 inches in diameter. It is valued at $1,500.

13.Georg Jensen Sterling Silver Acorn Salt and Pepper Shakers No 423B

Year: 1950-1959

Origin: Denmark

Price: $428.78

13.Georg Jensen Sterling Silver Acorn Salt and Pepper Shakers No 423B

Shaped like a new type of modern bullet, or a woman’s lipstick case, these Georg Jensen shakers are designed to appeal. Their appearance on the table or shelf never gets boring. The salt and pepper case tapers from the narrow top to a wider base. The cover has an acorn design. From a different angle the shakers look like a pair of chess pawns. They are valued at

$428.78.

14.Vintage Georg Jensen 925 Sterling Silver Pair of Salt and Pepper Shakers

Year: 1950-1959

Origin: Denmark

Price: $1,276.14

14.Vintage Georg Jensen 925 Sterling Silver Pair of Salt and Pepper Shakers

These pairs of shakers were manufactured by Georg Jensen in Denmark between the years 1950 and 59. They are vintage and valued at $1,276.14 for a good reason. The shakers are shaped like miniature druid pits with big covers. They sit on three little balls.

15. Vintage Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

Year: 1977

Origin:

Price: $1,499.47

15. Vintage Sterling Silver Salt and Pepper Shakers

And why does this pair of shakers make you think of James Bond films? I can almost imagine M, James’ handler in the MI6 sprinkling salt on hard-boiled eggs as she quips her orders at James Bond sitting across the table, his face harder boiled than the eggs M is about to consume. These salt and pepper shakers are from London and were made in 1977. They are vintage and valued at $1,499.47.

The History Of Salt And Pepper Shakers

The History Of Salt And Pepper Shakers

It is sometimes said that John Landis Mason invented the salt and pepper shaker in 1858 when he made the screw-top Mason jar.

Salt and Pepper shakers are condiments dispensers in western cultures that allow diners to spray or distribute grains of pepper or salt on their meals. Salt and Pepper are sometimes held or stored in containers called cruets.

People would often pair salt and pepper in 17th century France. They considered black pepper the only pepper which didn’t overpower the taste of food. Shakers can be made from materials that include glass, plastic, metal, and ceramic.

Salt shakers became popular right after caking agents were introduced into the manufacture of salt by the Morton Salt Company in the 1920s. As global manufacturers concentrated on making inexpensive materials during the Great Depression, salt and pepper shakers became even more popular.

The sets are usually presented in pairs, and distinguished by the number of holes on top of the shaker. Designs can be plain glass or more elaborately designed. Designers often love to tell stories or transmit their culture through their various designs. They may also relate specific holidays or occasions.

Users often distinguished salt and pepper shakers by the number of holes on the top of the cover. In the US people considered too much salt as unhealthy so salt shakers there usually have fewer holes. It is different in parts of Europe where salt is considered a rare spice. There they have more holes on their salt shaker cover.

In the UK they usually pour salt on the side of the plate as they eat so that they dipped food in it. This is why salt shakers from the UK have one single big hole as they didn’t need to shake the salt on their meals. Some shakers are labeled to make identification easy. Others aren’t if the container is transparent.

How To Identify Antique Salt And Pepper Shakers

How To Identify Antique Salt And Pepper Shakers

The following ways are how to identify antique salt and pepper shakers:

Manufacturers mark

To identify antique salt and pepper shakers, you have to turn them upside down to get a look for the manufacturer’s mark or stamp. If you find “Made in USA” or Occupied Japan” then you are definitely looking at a vintage salt and pepper shaker.

The US and Japan led the manufacture of salt and pepper shakers in their heyday. The “Occupied Japan” mark means the shaker was manufactured in post world war 2 Japan.

Multiple Sets

When it comes in multiple sets the shakers are usually considered valuable and vintage. This is because moveable parts are easy to get lost or break. Some sets come with cruets for holding stores of salt.

The Materials

Modern shakers are mostly made with plastic and other lighter materials. Antique shakers are usually made with heavy ceramics and precious metals. When you find shakers made of silver and are heavy or ones that are made of ceramic, then know you have hit gold in salt and pepper shakers.

The Design Finish

You can also tell antique salt and pepper shakers from the finish the manufacturer gives them. Most classic shakers portray the culture of the country where they are made. They also may have depictions of special or notable events from the era or year when they were manufactured.

The Country Of Origin

If it is possible to get a hold of information about the country of origin of the shaker you may be able to determine if it is antique. Shakers from Japan are likely to be antique, especially if they are made from ceramic or porcelain. These shakers are likely to be from post world war 2 Japan. And if they’re heavy with precious metals and are from Italy, maybe what you have is antique Tiffany.

Types Of Antique Salt And Pepper Shakers

Manufacturers make salt and pepper shakers using different types of materials. The types can be classified into the following:

  • Wooden shakers
  • Porcelain
  • Ceramic
  • Metal
  • Glass
  • Plastic

Wooden Salt And Pepper Shakers

Wooden Salt And Pepper Shakers

These are made entirely from wood materials. They can be carved into different shapes but most are plain while others are usually crafted into an animal or other figurines with hollow insides to house either the pepper or salt. Some wooden shakers do have multiple parts; wooden bodies and plastic or metal covers.

Porcelain salt and pepper shakers

Porcelain salt and pepper shakers

These are made from porcelain and are more fragile, requiring more care than wooden shakers. Many shakers from Japan are porcelain. They are from the occupied era in Japan. Porcelain shakers usually feature hand painting designs.

Ceramic Salt and Pepper Shakers

Ceramic Salt and Pepper Shakers

These are made of ceramics and can be easily indistinguishable from porcelain shakers. You can find them among antiques from the early 19 to 20th century and even among those from the 70s. They are also dominant among occupied Japanese shakers. They usually feature drawings, molded into figures and hand-painted.

Metal Salt And Pepper Shakers

Metal Salt And Pepper Shakers

These are made from metal materials of different kinds. Metal shakers also come in silver, copper, and brass materials. They are mostly plain colored, brown, and gold-colored. They are usually more durable and impervious to wear. Many of them only require some polishing to get their shine back.

Glass Salt And Pepper Shakers

Glass Salt And Pepper Shakers

Antique Glass shakers usually have a mix of materials. 90 percent glass but 10 percent metal or plastic. They will feature plastic or wooden caps and clear glass bodies. They can also come in colors like green, blue, and gold.

Brands Of Antique Salt And Pepper Shakers

Before world war 2, most shakers were imported from Japan and Europe. By the time the war began, those imports were banned and American companies had to go into production to satisfy customers’ needs. The following are some of the more popular brands of antique salt and pepper shakers.

Holt Howard

Holt Howard comprised two brothers John and Robert Howard and a friend Grant Holt. Their parents loaned them the money to begin their own business. They started operations in 1949. Then from 1958 to the 1960s, they were known for producing the pixieware, jars, and shakers that featured elves in the design.

Georg Jensen Brand

This was a company in the early 1900s that made shakers. He was known for his timeless Scandinavian designs and superior craftsmanship. Georg Jensen shakers are very recognizable in that they were unusual and almost futuristic in their designs. Jensen’s shakers are marked with his insignia. They were mostly metal shakers and silverware.

CF Monroe Mount Washington brand

This was a company in the United States of America that sold glass shakers between 1890 and 1910. Monroe didn’t make its own glass. The company bought blank glass and decorated it. They would paint it with several background colors before hand-painting it.

Staffordshire Ceramics

This company produced shakers as part of cruets. The brand was known for shakers that featured novelty characters with pink cheeks and big hats. In the 1900s they started making shakers that feature heads of movie stars.

The Value Of Antique Salt And Pepper Shakers

The value of salt and pepper shakers isn’t as easy to place as any other collectibles. Shakers have to be intact and the set must be complete for it to be worth much. Usually, the older and rarer the antique the more valuable it should be.

For shakers, however, it seems this rule doesn’t necessarily apply. Some very rare shakers dating back into the late 1800s are as cheap in money terms as those made in the 1970s.

These factors influence the value of antique salt and pepper shakers:

Condition

No one wants a damaged Antique salt and pepper shaker. If the shaker is damaged or broken it reduces drastically in value. However, in some rare cases, some collectors might fancy one that is broken due to its age or significant story.

Manufacturer

If the manufacturer is popular, old, and known for producing other very valuable materials then it increases in value. For example, shakers made by Tiffany and Georg Jensen are considered valuable.

Age and Era

Though this isn’t always the case, age does influence the value of a shaker. You may be able to get a good sum for an antique shaker from the late 1800s if it’s also in good condition and meets some of the criteria mentioned above.  Also, some shakers from a certain era can command great value. For example, shakers from the era of Japan’s occupation by allied powers that are in good condition could bring a couple of hundred dollars.

Design and brand

Certain designs command respect. The more intricate the design, the more value it may have. Certain metal shakers are also very valuable. An example is “designed by Georg Jensen”. On average, antique salt and pepper shakers are worth anything from $5 to $1000 or more. The value of antique salt and pepper shakers is highly arbitrary and influenced by sentiments.

Where To Sell Antique Salt And Pepper Shakers

You can sell your antique salt and pepper shakers at the following places:

Garage sales

If you have some shakers that you believe are worth an amount you can put them up for sale right at your own place. They are commonplace items that anyone might be interested in.

Auction houses

This is are some of the best places to sell your antique salt and pepper shakers because you will usually find collectors and evaluators in the gathering.

Unlike a garage sale, collectors end up buying for better prices than your neighbors who may know nothing about the value of antiques. So search out auction houses in your area to sell yours.

Online auctions

Auctions offer a great opportunity for your antique shaker to be seen by a larger audience. The disadvantage of online auctions is there will certainly be other items that increase the competition. Prices may not be as great as you expect for your antique shaker. eBay and Etsy are common sites where people bid for antique items.

Last Words

If you have antique salt or pepper shakers that you are simply not using and have no intention of using, then adding them to a salt and pepper shaker collection is also an option for you. If you have any of the aforementioned items, then maybe this list will help you get an idea of their worth and value. Hopefully, this article has helped you out in terms of identifying the various features that can make one salt and pepper shaker more valuable than another. Until next time!

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