Elkington & Co. 1908 Lipton Cup

  • Crafted by Elkington & Co., this 1908 "Lipton Cup" is a monumental, finely crafted yachting trophy
  • Sir Thomas Lipton, a successful businessman and passionate yachtsman, was never a strong sailor
  • Called "the best of all losers," Lipton was a beacon of sportsmanship
  • Sportsmanship awards presented by Lipton himself in the early 20th century are named “Lipton Cups”
  • Get complete item description here
Price Upon Request Item No. 31-6219

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A monumental, finely crafted yachting trophy bearing an equally remarkable story, this Elkington & Co. “Lipton Cup,” awarded by Sir Thomas Lipton himself embodies the pride and prestige of winning the Lipton Cup title. Sir Thomas Lipton, the great Scottish entrepreneur and founder of the Lipton Tea company, was a talented businessman and passionate yachtsman. His prowess for business, however, did not transfer to skills on the water. Though an avid competitor, Lipton never won a major race and was instead teased as “the best of all losers” by the New York Yacht Club. A beacon of sportsmanship, Lipton chose to foster good relations by commissioning magnificent trophies, and bestowed them to yachting clubs between 1905 and 1930. These awards presented by Lipton were rightfully named “Lipton Cups.”

This cup was commissioned for the Brooklyn Yacht Club’s 325-mile ocean race on July 4th, 1908. The exceptional trophy, measuring an impressive 40“ tall and 20” wide, is beautifully decorated with nautical motifs including Neptune masks, dolphins and seagrass. The windswept figures adorning the handles evoke the romanticism of Art Nouveau, and the winged victory at the top adds to the award’s majesty.

Sir Thomas Lipton truly embodies the triumphs of the golden age of business. As a young American immigrant, he worked odd jobs with ambitions of returning to Scotland to make his fortune. At the age of 26, Lipton returned to his homeland, opened a grocery store and quickly became a success. He opened shops throughout Great Britain and developed factories for jellies, jam and of course his famous tea. By age 40, Lipton was a millionaire who was well on his way to creating a worldwide tea empire, and by 48 he began his yachting adventures. The tradition of "Lipton Cups" continues today at yacht clubs across the United States, remembering the visionary's admirable sportsmanship.

Dated 1908

Engraved "The Brooklyn Yacht Club / Ocean Race / 1908 / Presented by / Sir Thomas J. Lipton — BART — K.C.V.O./ Won by Shamrock"

39 1/2" high by 18 1/2" wide by 14" deep
Elkington & Co. 1908 Lipton Cup
Maker: Elkington & Co.
Period: 20th Century
Origin: America
Type: Trophies/Presentation Pieces
Depth: 14.0
Width: 18.5
Height: 39.5
Elkington & Co. 1908 Lipton Cup
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