The firm was established in the early 1800s by Thomas Turner and was based at the Suffolk Works on Norfolk Street. Its 'Encore' trademark was registered in the mid 1800s, having previously been registered by another cutler, Luke Brownell.A souvenir publication dating to around 1903 notes that 18,000 machine forged table knife blades were being produced at Suffolk Works each week. The blade of this knife was most likely produced in this way. The blade and fork are made from steel and are joined to stag hafts (handles).
By the late 1800s Thomas Turner & Co was one of the most important cutlery firms in Sheffield. By the early 1900s it had increased in size by merging with the cutlery firms Wingfield, Rowbotham & Co and Joseph Haywood & Co. This increased its number of employees from 300 to 1,000. Thomas Turner & Co made a large range of goods including table knives, saws, files and edge tools. Like some of the other larger cutlery firms, it also produced and forged its own crucible steel using imported Swedish bar iron. The company supplied the Navy with open razors and exported its knives across the British Colonies.