Newsletter Steven Ferry

The Modern Butlers’ Journal, August 2021, The Wisdom of Butlers Past

Steven FerryThe Wisdom of Butlers Past

by Steven Ferry


PART 51, Having Sufficient Silver and China

One problem butlers ran into was not having enough silverware and plates, and so they had to remove them from the table as quickly as possible once used. They were washed and then presented again for the next course.

Advice offered by one employer was to set up a maid outside the dining room with a bowl of hot water to wash the items and cold water to rinse them—and so avoid the time of taking dirty items all the way to the scullery by the kitchen.

Anyone who can afford a butler these days, of course, is unlikely to have a shortage of these items, even if they have to switch sets between courses or have to bring in caterers.



Extracted from the 1823 book, The Footman’s Directory and Butler’s Remembrancer, re-published in hardback by Pryor Publications. You may obtain your discounted copy (with free s&h) by emailing the publisher: Mr. Pryor (alan AT



The Institute is dedicated to raising service standards by broadly disseminating the mindset and superior service expertise of that time-honored, quintessential service provider, the British Butler, updated with modern people skills, and adapted to the needs of modern employers and guests in staffed homes, luxury hotels, resorts, spas, retirement communities, jets, yachts & cruise ships around the world.