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Antique Safes/Age and value of Herring-Hall-Marvin Safe


Dent 1
Dent 1  

Dent 2
Dent 2  
Hello, Andy,

Thank you for reading this. I just acquired a Herring-Hall-Marvin Safe, Model 2048B, serial #474938, gray in color, from a local department store that went out of business 10 years ago. Fire class B, T-20 tamper resistant door, manufactured in Hamilton, Ohio. It seems to function fine but the lock mechanism has a little wear. I would like to know the following please: its age, its value, proper care of the lock and locking mechanisms/bolts, what lubricants to use, and can a replacment decal for the door be ordered.

Thank you very much for your time and expertise.
MJ Dent, Girard, KS

Mary Jane,

Your Herring-Hall-Marvin safe is from the 1950's.    It is not collectible and is not an antique (over 100 years old).    Safes which are over 50 years old do not meet current standards for fire protection, and this safe is NOT a burglary resistant safe, as indicated by the "Tamper Resistant" label.
While it has no value under any of the above categories, this doesn't mean that it doesn't have some value - just no retail or commercial value.    It should not be used for overnight storage of cash, jewelry or valuable documents.
This container is only designed for storage of general purpose documents.

In order to keep it operational, and functioning I would recommend annual maintenance (if the safe is in commercial use), and at a minimum every 3-5 years in residential use.   The only maintenance caveat would be to have someone look at it as soon as you notice any problems.   Waiting until you are locked out should not be an option!

Fire resistance:     $0     doesnot meet current standards
Burglary          $0     this is not a burglary resistive safe
resale:          $0     has no commercial or retail value.
Antique/collectible: $0     neither antique or collectible / basically this would be office equipment.

If it were on my show room floor, we would probaly have it listed for around $250-$350.

Hope this helps,

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Terry V. Andreasen (Andy)


Safe and Vault related Questions; Antique Safe Repair and Restoration; With over 44 years in the Safe & Vault industry, if I can't answer your question I know where to get the answer. Current Project: Restoration of an Ely Norris Cannonball Safe from the early 1900's. Will answer Safe & Vault related questions concerning age, value, restoration, moving, opening & repairing, parts, operation and history. Note: It is not my intention to teach you to open safes or to provide information which may aid in the unlawful opening of a safe. I will not give out drill points or information which I deem inappropriate.


44 years in the Safe & Vault Industry. Owner and Service Manager for one of the largest Safe & Vault companies on the West Coast. Graduate of Lockmasters Safe Lock Servicing, Safe lock Manipulation and Safe Deposit Lock Courses. Graduate of Locksmith Institute. Author of "The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes". Certified Instructor for the California Locksmith Association teaching Basic and Advanced Lock Servicing, Basic Safe opening and Repairing. Factory Trained by AMSEC, LORD Safes, LeFebure, Mosler, KabaMas, LaGard and Sargent & Greenleaf

Safecrackers International and the National Antique Safe Association Safe & Vault Technicians Association

The Coffee Table Guide to Antique Safes

Graduate of Locksmith Institute 1972 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Lock Servicing 1974 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Lock Manipulation 1975 Graduate Lockmasters Safe Deposit Lock Servicing 1985 Instructor Certified - California Locksmith Association - 1985 Factory trained by AMSEC, MAJOR, STAR, Johnson-Pacific, Kaba-MAS, Allied-Gary, ISM, Lord, Brown Safe, EXL, Mosler, Diebold.

Awards and Honors
2009 - 2015 Listed in AllExperts top 50 Experts. All Experts Categories - Safes & Security Containers, Locksmithing, Antique Safes. Retired US Army Chief Warrant Officer (CW4), with 39 years of total service. With numerous awards from Vietnam, Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom. US Navy - 1971-1981 US Army Reserve 1984-2013 US Army Retired

Past/Present Clients
US Secret Service, FBI, BATF, Local Law enforcment agencies, Diebold, Hamilton Pacific, Red Hawk Int., Chubb International, Bank of America, Wells Fargo Bank, Mechanics Bank, El Dorado Savings Bank, many Credit unions and smaller banks. McDonalds, Togos, BurgerKing, TacoBell, Carls Jr. FoodMaxx, SaveMart, Lucky's, Albertson's, Raley's, Safeway, NobHill, Bell Markets, PW Markets. Great America, Century Theatres, Cinemark Theatres, UA Cinemas, and many homeowners and small businesses. Provide warranty service for lock and safe manufactures. Service area is Northern California - Fresno to Oregon, including western Nevada

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