Community Plate is one of the brands or "marks" of silver-plated flatware made by the Oneida Community beginning in 1899. Silver plating is a process by which a thin layer of silver is applied to an alloy of base metals.
Oneida became one of the key manufacturers of silver-plated flatware in the 19th century, and Community Plate was one of its first hallmarks. Community Plate flatware is marked with the words "Community Plate" as well as several Oneida hallmarks.
The Oneida company grew out of a utopian community that was founded in New York in the mid-19th century and that ran a series of businesses to support the community. It later bought the companies of William Rogers, who was key in the development of the electro-plating process that made silver plating practical.