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Antique Safes/Safe Value if any


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My in-laws recently passed away, and inside their home was an old safe. There is no brand name that we can see on the safe, but on one of the pull out drawers it has 1884 written in the bottom in a black pencil. In back of the door of the safe, the lock says Yale Cambridge with a date of 1873, and a patent of 8.
The safe has to weigh in the neighborhood of 600 pounds, as we cannot move it.

We have no idea if there is a value to this safe, we do not have the combination, but the door is open.

We would appreciate any help you could give us.

Thank you.

Gary, from what I see, the safe is not worth a whole lot in that condition.  Several hundred at the most I'd say.  Not sure of the maker.  But I am curious about the lock.  The "8" would not be a patent number but could possibly be a lock model number.  By the 1870's the Yale and Towne Lock Co. was in Stamford, Conn., so is Cambridge really on the lock?  If so, that is even more interesting.  Back in those days it was very common for lock makers to give names to their locks.  But a Yale Cambridge?  A Yale New Haven would make more sense.  There were, if I am not mistaken two Yale locks patented in 1873.  Can you post pictures of the lock where you see this?  Pull the back cover off and take one inside the door.  Doug  

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Doug MacQueen


This unusual and highly innovative safe from the later 1800's is a Corliss. William, the much younger brother of George Corliss of steam engine fame, spent several years perfecting this design and it was first displayed at the 1876 Philadelphia U.S. Centennial Exhibition. I do extensive patent research helping me in the study of antique U.S. safes and safe locks. Repairs and part making for antique U.S. safes of the early to mid 1800's, both key and combination. Also the study of early round door chest designs up to and including cannonball safes of the early 1900's.


40 years in the lock and safe trade with a stint in bank service work. Openings, repairs and moving of safes of all types.

Charter member Safe and Vault Technicians Association SAVTA, National Safemans Association NSO, National Antique Safe Association NASA. No longer current.

SAVTA monthly magazine

CMS (Certified Master Safecracker- NSO) and CPS (Certified Professional Safe Technician - SAVTA)

Awards and Honors
2nd place national combination manipulation contest 1986 and now in 2016 1st place

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