Marvin Miller wrote at 2011-05-11 23:11:07
I've done research on antique trunks for many years. This trunk has hardware patented by Antony Romadka of Milwaukee WI and was made by the Romadka Bros. Trunk company sometime between about 1874 to 1880. The front latches were patented in 1873 and the lock was patented by Star Lock Co. of Philadelpia. It was a style that they called a Saratoga trunk and was leather covered. Trunk styles kept changing ever few years but they did continue to use the same patented hardware for several years. I have a trunk nearly identical to this one, with some small differences in the hardware. You hardly ever find a label on them because they put tags on them that were like a hang tag label and they are nearly always torn off. The Romadka brothers became millionaires from their trunk company and it continued into the 1920's.
Marvin Miller wrote at 2012-12-25 07:01:41
Hi Debby, I just happened to see your picture and questions about your trunk. I used to be an active expert for allexperts in the category of antique trunks. I can tell you that your trunk was made by the Romadka Brothers trunk company of Milwaukee, WI between 1884 to 1890. The only part on it that was not made by Romadka was the lock, which was made by the Star Lock Works of Philadelphia. This was called a Cross Slat Barrel top trunk and also sometimes referred to as a Saratoga trunk, a large fancy round top trunk style. The hardware styles, latches, and the pressed metal covering were all patented by Anthony Romadka and only used by their company. I have recently completely restored a couple Romadka trunks of this style and have many pictures if you are interested. I hope this helps you.
Marvin Miller wrote at 2013-03-13 05:12:28
I am a more recent Expert with All Experts and specialize in antique trunks. This trunk is a Cross Slat barrel top trunk, which could also be called a Saratoga trunk. I've studied trunk manufacturers, patents, styles, hardware, etc. for many years. This trunk was made by the Romadka Brothers trunk company of Milwaukee, WI and is from the mid 1880's to mid 1890's based on the hardware and trunk style. It was originally covered with tooled leather. The front latches and some other parts of the trunk were patented by Anthony Romadka and only used on the Romadka trunks. Many other trunk companies used generic hardware that was available to all trunk makers, but some companies including Romadka were more exclusive with their hardware and trunk styles. This is a high quality trunk and if professionally restored the value would be greatly increased. These trunks all had interior trays with multiple compartments. I hope this additional information is helpful. Marvin Miller, ThisOldTrunk. com
Hoosier Daddy wrote at 2015-11-16 23:25:11
This is a high end trunk from Romadka brothers in Milwaukee. The latch in the pic was patented by them and the big giveaway. It looks like it is still in pretty good shape for the age and would look nice with a bit of work.
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