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Antique Safes/Antique Vault


The company I work for is in the process of refinishing our office space in a historical section of Fort Mill, SC. The space is an old bank and has an antique vault that unfortunately has been painted over multiple times. The only visible manufacturer marks on it would be "Miller Balto" which is located on the combination dial. I did some research and the only similar company that I can find would be Miller Safe of Baltimore, MD. We are looking to restore the face of the vault so we are hoping to find a picture of what they originally looked like. I do see gold and red borders/striping where the blue wall paint is chipping off.

Tina, the only practical way is to carefully strip the paint down to the original.  I suspect that would be considerably faster than finding another similar door with original paint.  I did find online that Duke University has a L.H. Miller catalog showing the backside of a vault door but it is not in color.  You may be able to get the catalog on the inter library loan service.  Doug  

Antique Safes

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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 No longer current.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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