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old wooden trunk

trunkman's loves1326 of 4166Luggage/Trunk Built to  Travel  With StyleLeather covered small trunk or hat trunk, 1850's
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    Posted 6 years ago

    (1 item)

    I would like help in finding the age type of wood, where it was made and any other information I could find about this trunk. I clean houses and was doing a clean out and it had been left as garbage. I asked the realty that hired me to do the cleaning and they said anything left behind I could have. I found it interesting, the picture under the lid really drew me in. I have done nothing to it but wash it off and put a bit of furniture polish on it. Thanks in advance for any help given.


    1. TrunkerMarvin TrunkerMarvin, 6 years ago
      Hi Christi49,
      You've had some good luck finding this trunk that was left behind. It was a high quality, fairly expensive trunk when it was made. This style with the narrow wood slat covering was designed by the Martin Maier trunk company of Detroit, MI. The latches on the front were patented in 1882 and this trunk was probably made sometime between about 1884 to the early 1890's based on the research I've done. I've restored and collected these old trunks for nearly 40 years now. It looks like someone has put some old "antiquing" finish over the wood, which is not original. It could be stripped off if you wanted to refinish the wood. The wood on these was a hardwood, sometimes oak, but other woods were used including hickory, ash, and elm. The lock was patented in 1877 by Star Lock Works of Philadelphia, but they were used for about 30 years on trunks. The colorful picture in the lid is original and is a chromolithograph. These were made in dozens of styles by printing companies and used by most trunk companies in the 1880's to early 1900's. There are good original style leather handles available for these trunks now too. If you would like more information about the trunk maker, refinishing tips, finding a key, or would like some pictures of restored and refinished trunks like this, you can email me at Great find!

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