Historical information

In the 18th century, spring scales appeared. To produce these scales, a manufacturer would use the resistance of a spring to calculate weights, which could be read automatically on the scale’s face. The ease of use of spring scales over balance scales is what led most post offices to outfit their clerks with spring postal scales. One of the most common types of spring scales was the kitchen scale—also known as a family or dial scale. Designed for horizontal surfaces, these scales used the weight of goods in a pan at the top of the scale to force the spring down. Such scales were common in early-20th-century households and were sold by Sears and Montgomery Ward. Many had flat weighing surfaces but some were topped by shallow pans. Companies such as Salters, Chatillon, and Fairbanks made both. SALTER HOUSEWARES began in the late 1760 in the village of Bilston, England.

At this time Richard Salter, a spring maker, began making 'pocket steelyards', a scale similar to the fisherman's scale of today. By 1825 his nephew George had taken over the company, which became known as George Salter & Co. and later established a large, well equipped manufacturing site in the town of West Bromwich. The business thrived throughout the 1900s, and in 1972 the company was purchased by Staveley Industries Plc. In 2002, the management team at Salter Housewares Ltd, backed by Barclays Private Equity, bought the company out from the group, to concentrate on its consumer businesses. In 2004 was sold to the US-based HoMedics company, and in 2006, Salter Housewares USA and Taylor Precision Products Inc (also owned by HoMedics) merged.

Physical description

A portable, brass balance scale , 'Salters' for weighing items. A steel ring holds a brass plate marked with graduations 0 – 26 to which is attached a steel hook.

Inscriptions & markings

Graduated 0 – 26 / PATENT / No. 8
Base rope & anchor S (trade mark)