HAROLD STABLER: A cased silver and enamelled presentation casket
There is a similar enamelled cigarette box in the collection of The Goldsmiths Company, published as no. 49 in the exhibition catalogue Treasures of the 20th Century.
Harold Stabler RDI (1872 - 1945)
Born in Levens, Westmoreland. His training was in the Arts and Crafts Movement, firstly, in the stone and wood carving at the Kendal School of Art under Arthur Simpson and, later, metalwork at the Keswick School of Industrial Art. In 1899, he left Keswick to study in the metalwork department of the Liverpool School of Art under Richard Llewellyn Rathbone. In around 1906, he moved to London to teach at the John Cass Technical Institute as head of the Art Department. Around the same time he married Phoebe Gertrude McLeish, the couple went on to collaborate in the design and execution of jewellery, silverwork and pottery. Together they set up a business in their home, Hammersmith in 1912. During the First World War with his wife they worked on a series of cloisonné enamelled wall plaques (also in the collection at The Goldsmiths Hall) together with a Japanese artist who instructed them in enamelling techniques. Stabler was an instructor of metalwork, jewellery and enamelling at the Royal College of Art 1912-1926. He went on to design for several major silversmithing companies; Goldsmiths & Silversmiths, Adie Brothers and Wakely & Wheeler, using an 'architectural modernist geometric style, later to be called Art Deco.' He was very much part of the modern movement and was awarded the first Royal Designer for Industry in 1936, for pottery, enamelling and silversmithing, by the British Royal Society of Arts. Frank Pick, Chief Executive of 'London Transport,' was determined that every element of London Transport's activities should be in unified designs. The design programme commissioned many leading artists, including Stabler who was responsible for the tiles used at St Paul's, Aldgate East, Bethnal Green, St. John's Wood and Swiss Cottage Underground stations. For Wood Green station, he designed the bronze ventilation grilles depicting deer and doves as well as numerous posters for the Underground Group and London Transport.
Brigadier Walter Hugh Crosland CBE DSO TD (1894 1960) was born in Berkshire in 1894, and educated at Malvern College. He joined the Berkshire Yeomanry in 1914 and served with them throughout the Great War. During the Second World War, he was appointed to command R.A. 76th Infantry Division, 1942-43, and subsequently to the command of 9th Army Group R.A., serving with 21 Army Group during the European Campaign. Among his awards are the following recommendations extracted from official records: Commander of the Order of the British Empire (C.B.E.) (Military) London Gazette 29 March 1945. The fire support he has produced... has at all times been magnificent and the moves of his formation from one corps to another have always been conducted with great efficiency and speed under trying circumstances and on occasions when speed was essential. This officer has had no rest since the commencement of operations and has been under considerable enemy fire both from bombing and artillery fire.' Distinguished Service Order (D.S.O.) London Gazette 21 June 1945. 'Brigadier Crosland has displayed the highest qualities of command throughout operations... By the deployment of his guns on the most forward positions, often almost uncovered by our own ground troops, he has been able to reach deep into the enemy's positions with great effect, and thus materially neutralise the enemy's countermeasures. His personal character when under fire has been an example to all.'