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The Maison Auger was founded by Louis-Alphonse Auger (1837 – 1904) in 1862. He had begun his career as a stone setter but decided to establish his own jewellery firm and set up premises at 54, rue Etienne-Marcel in Paris’s 2nd arrondissement.
Within a couple of years of opening he had partnered with Gabriel Falguières and they remained working together until 1870. For the following eight years Auger worked alone and it was during this time that his business expanded considerably and, according to Vever, he was for many years the “appointed supplier to important firms such as Lemoine and Mellerio-Borgnis.” Items such as diamond-set tiaras which were convertible into many different jewels and butterfly and insect brooches with translucent enamel wings and gem-set bodies were produced to extremely high standards by Auger.
In 1878 he formed a second partnership, this time with M. Guéret which was to continue for eleven years. Auger was joined in the business by his eldest son Georges in 1895. Five years later Georges assumed the running of the business, registering his own mark in May 1900 and he was shorty joined by his younger brother Emile. By this time the firm had a separate shop that was located at Place des Victoires as evidenced by the silk lining of their jewellery boxes dating from circa 1880 onwards. They kept abreast of changing styles and fashions and created both charming Art Nouveau jewels and later stunning Art Deco pieces such as the exquisite wide diamond strap bracelet with calibré-cut emerald swirls that sold recently at auction for $125,000.
In 1907 Maison Auger acquired the Maison Froment-Meurice as evidenced by contemporary advertisements and the joint marks seen on works of the period, for example the 1913 silver trophy made for the 3rd European International Regatta. The joint names also appear on a collection of military honour medals and their cases which were created for the Kingdom of Laos during the early part of the 20th Century. As well as gem-set jewellery, the Maison Auger created many pieces such as these as well as other works in silver including ceremonial swords of honour. Both brothers were awarded the Legion d’Honneur and continued to run the business successfully until sometime around 1940 when the firm closed.