Collecting, cleaning, displaying, researching, and appreciating TRIVETS and related go-withs!
This handsome trivet design, known as the Hopewell, is frequently described as an antique. However, it’s actually a contemporary casting.
In 2003 I contacted the Superintendent of the Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site in Elverson, Pennsylvania. He confirmed that this trivet was produced for and sold in the Hopewell Furnace gift shops. It was fashioned after a piece of metalware (not a trivet) found on Hopewell Furnace grounds during excavation for the historic site.
The Hopewell trivet was initially cast by the Unicast Company of Boyertown, PA from the mid-1980s to 1995. Since then casting has been performed by the Delvest Company of West Chester, PA.
I’m aware of three signature variations: Hopewell inscribed; Hopewell on a raised plate; and unsigned. None of these trivets have significant wear, finning, rough cast marks or anything to suggest that they are older castings. The signed versions measure 8 x 5¾ ” while the unsigned versions are smaller, at 7½ x 5½”. (The smaller, unsigned trivet is most probably a copy of the original, since it’s one size smaller.)
So, in conclusion: whether an original or a copy, the Hopewell design is a fairly recent casting and definitely not an antique!