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    Posted 11 years ago

    (3 items)

    This is a large trunk that we bought in an Antique store in Omak, WA. There are heavy leather strap handles on the ends and what looks like brass on the corner pieces and other hardware. Someone has handpainted a flower pattern on top and signed the name Betty next to it. Inside it has two lift out compartments, one open and the other with a kind of folding lid and then a larger storage space under those.

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    1., 9 years ago
      A Vulcanized fiber trunk, probably from around 1930 to 1940.
    2. trunkingforfun, 8 years ago
      Is only the body of the trunk vulcanized fiber or are the straps that material also? When did that material become widely used? I have a trunk that may have it in place of leather straps. I could not figure what it was but, readin here, I am beginning to think vulcanized fiber.
    3. trunkman trunkman, 8 years ago
      Yes those straps or bands along the edges and through the center are vulcanized fiber. This material started to make its way onto trunks late 20's to early 30's and then became common in the 40's and 50's.
    4., 8 years ago
      Hello. I am not sure which trunk parts you are referring to. Straps, are the two (or sometimes one) 1" to 1 1/4" straps that go over the trunk through a buckle in front to keep the lid secure. These were made of leather, never fiber. Handles, are the leather pieces on the ends, and are used to lift the trunk. These are often called straps, but that is incorrect and very misleading. The piece on the edge is called the binding. The term edging is also acceptable, but less correct. Your trunk has fiber binding. (FYI In the 19th century fiber was spelled fibre) I have trunk catalogs as early as 1911 with a great many trunks being offered with fiber binding. Canvas was used as a trunk covering for quite a while ( into the 20s) then trunks were made totally out of fiber. This would have been around the 30s.
      Your trunk has fiber binding and possibly fiber covering. (it is hard to tell from the pictures.) It could be metal, and you can check it with a magnet to see. (one off the fridge will do) Fiber is easy to spot as it almost always looks perfect, when compared to aged leather. This is because fiber was extremely durable, and did not wear the way leather did.
      Hope this helps,
    5. trunkingforfun, 8 years ago
      Helps a lot for sure. Thanks.

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