Jeffrey Herman

With much sadness, we regret to announce that master silversmith Jeffrey Herman recently passed. We celebrate and honor Jeff’s life along with his many accomplishments. He will be greatly missed!

In Memoriam - Jeffrey Herman

Jeff Herman was a preeminent silver conservator and wonderful human being. After being drawn to jewelry in high school, Jeff attended the Portland School of Art, now Maine College of Art. While at PSA, Jeff was influenced by two master silversmiths, Ernest “Tommy” Thompson and Harold “Hal” Schremmer. Upon graduating, he worked for Gorham as a designer, sample maker and technical illustrator. He then went on to work at Pilz Ltd., a small silver company where he created ecclesiastical and specialty-ware, before going into business on his own.

As a result of his early experiences, Jeff quickly built an international reputation for honest advice and quality craftsmanship, with special attention to surface finishing. Jeff restored, reconstructed and hand finished everything from everyday disposal-damaged flatware to historically important tankards, tureens and tea services made by the likes of Paul Revere, Paul Storr, Hester Batemen, Jabez Gorham, Louis Tiffany, Willian D. Whiting, and Fletcher and Gardiner. Jeff was one of the only non-British citizens to earn the title of Fellow of the Institute of Professional Goldsmiths.

As an environmentalist, Jeff was a great advocate of using the safest methods of silversmithing and developed his own line of silver cleaning products that are now the benchmark for all silver conservation use, from household to museum.

In 1989, Jeff founded the Society of American Silversmiths (SAS) to preserve and promote America’s silversmithing heritage, and he remained at its helm as Executive Director. Jeff built up a repository of highly valuable information on the SAS website and was keen to share information in the most generous way possible.

In about 2001, Peter Johns, the inventor of Argentium Silver, was visiting Stern Leach at the same time Jeff was hosting a conference of SAS silversmiths, and invited Peter to give a presentation about Argentium Silver, “AS”. Jeff was then instrumental in bringing Argentium Silver to the United States, five years later.

Jeff also collaborated with Lampert Precision Welding (a German company) advancing the technology of their PUK welder. Michael Ittensohn, at Lampert, describes Jeff as forward thinking and truly inspiring. The company is incredibly grateful for his contributions to their technology.

Many have commented that meeting and talking with, or working with Jeff, changed their lives. The metals world has lost one of its shining stars. We are grateful for all Jeff gave to our community and will cherish his memory forever.


Jeffrey was a great resource to all of us. I hope that the extensive amount of information on his website will remain available in some way. Right now my thoughts are with his family and friends. He will be missed…Rob


I am heart broken. He was such a mensch. I never met him in person, but we became phone and email compadres. We both shared, the experience of being ecclesiastical and restoration silver smiths, (I only did this for about 6 years or so), as well as an obsession with mirror polished and cherished beautiful hammers and stakes. With his passing the metals world has sadly lost an intangible international resource of sadly soon to be lost knowledge.
FYI the hammer Jeff is holding in his hands is a Herman Planishing hammer that he designed. It’s a beautiful thing that is perfectly engineered. They can still be purchased from SC Studios.


Here is the Herman Planisher also



I am surprised that more of us haven’t noted the death of Jeffery Herman…Rob

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I am surprised that more of us haven’t noted the death of Jeffery Herman.

My only experience of him was through a video tutorial he made, and he seemed like such a nice guy, and way too young. His passing is so sad. I think many of us are stunned.


I agree, though I understand too, as the unexpected death of someone so important to Siversmithing and Metalsmithing in general, in many ways an unknowing Mentor to many of us, is oftentimes difficult to comprehend, difficult to accept…

Like Neil, I never had the chance to interact with him, even though I wanted to and would have loved to have spent even just an hour watching him work in his truly incredible Studio, he was such an amazing Craftsman and Artist and our little niche in the world is all the poorer for having lost him… I think that I’ve watched every video that he’s ever put out, many of them several times each (especially the one on his Studio), I’ve read everything that I could find that he’s written or that has been written about him and yet, it was never and unfortunately now, will never be enough… A Craftsman like Jeffery Herman doesn’t come along very often, most especially one who was so giving of his extensive Knowledge of Silversmithing and Restoration, from all that I’ve read and from many of my fellow Jewellers here on Ganoksin, he was always willing to help in any way that he could with simple to even very Technical questions - Truly Rare in a Craft such as ours, where Specialized Knowledge can be a Very Closely Guarded Secret… Like many of my personal Heroes, whom I have never had the chance to meet, Jeffrey Herman will take his place among them in a Shrine Devoted to Artists & Craftsmen of the Highest Order, where their Memory will Live On as a Neverending Testament to their Life’s Work and in so doing, will continue to Encourage, Motivate and Inspire me to Live my Life’s Work just as they did… I know that many on here Feel much the same way as I do…

Jeffrey Herman will be Truly Missed, though his Memory with Live On in All of those whom he has Touched, even in the smallest of ways and we will Never Forget what he has Done to Further and Enrich our Craft, our Art, for we are All the Better for it!

May his Family and Friends Find Peace in Knowing that he has Touched the Lives of So Many Fellow Craftsmen and Artists and that we will Never Forget Him… Thank You for Sharing Him with All of Us…


Wishing his Family and Friends comfort and peace during this difficult time.
Jeffrey Herman touched so many lives in the very best way, May his soul rest in perfect peace. Amen


Jeffery Herman was truly outstanding. I’ve seen those left behind gather the records and notes of the person even if it is just for themselves. With Jeffery, I hope that with a bit of time to pass, the need to save his legacy will have all of his knowledge put into a book in his honor. All lest we forget his wealth of knowledge. It’s never easy losing or coping with a loved one passing.


Our paths crossed several times years ago, here in Providence, and I can attest to the passion for silversmithing and, especially, the sharing of his knowledge and time freely. And, man, did he posess knowledge. Likewise, anyone I’ve ever met around town who dealt with Jeffery had the same opinion. He was a real mensch.

With the demise of USA [New England] silver manufacturing, I get to wondering if Jeff might be one of last last in a line of craftsman who had the oppurtunity to work and train with a domestic silversmithing firm of note before going on to do their own thing, like generations of workers in the Providence area had done for nearly two centuries. Sadly, that particular path no longer exists for someone as enterprising as he was.

Condolences to his family.

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