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Antique Safes/1871 patended "herrings champion" vintage floor safe


Well first of all, Thank you for being available to assist in helping answer questions i have pertaining to a safe found in an old building located on some property my boss purchased some time ago. The safe i believe was owned by a Col. E. E. Holland, which i believe had a town, highway and secondary rd. named after him. There is some documentation linked to him and the safe available. Was wondering if you could, or would be interested in helping me and my boss find, if any historical value pertaining to this particular item. Also there is an old desk i believe is from the same time period or earlier with it. The vintage safe was made for him in particular because it has his name on the front of it placed there i am assuming at the time it was purchased. It seems to have been through a fire at some time because the outer shell looks as if it were burnt at some point. If you would be so gracious to return my e-mail it would be highly appreciated,. Once again thank you for taking the time to review this message. Sincerely, Joseph

Joseph, although it is certainly possible that the safe was special ordered by Holland, it was common practice by many makers to put the buyers name at the top of the safe in the latter 1800's. Provenance of the safe is pretty well established any way. I doubt I could of any help to you at all, other than directing you to the Historical Society of the State of Virginia.  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 No longer current.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

Past/Present Clients

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