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Antique Safes/Melinks safe info



My friend's father brought over a very old restored Meilink's deposit vault about a year ago. We've had the combination for about 2 years and finally got it open today and understand how it works. It was a left 3x right 2x left to number and right until the combination dial will not turn anymore. the dial goes from 0-59, back to 0. It was really exciting to get it open. I was wondering if I could get any information about this great piece? year, rarity? what it might have been possibly used for, by who? just some general history on this would be awesome to know.

Meilink safe
Meilink safe  
Lou, those little Meilink safes were made in the early 1900's and typically would have been for home use, primarily for fire protection.  It is more their small size than their rarity that make them valuable in today's market, used as curios, end tables, etc.  This is especially true when they are so nicely refinished.  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 No longer current.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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