Collectibles-General (Antiques)/Antique trunk



I was wondering if you could tell me anything about this trunk including what it might be worth.

1911 trunk catalog
1911 trunk catalog  

This style trunk was made in the United States by many trunk companies, from about 1890 to as late as the early 1920's by a few companies. They were made in both men's and women's models and the difference was the way the interior was made and finished. They were sometimes called "Slatless Trunks" because most trunks had heavy wood slats over the canvas but these don't. The trunk body was sometimes made of solid wood, usually basswood, or also of plywood, because of the flexibility and lighter weight than other woods.  They were covered with heavy duck canvas. The center band and edge bindings were made of either heavy leather or from a pressed fiber material colored to imitate leather. It's hard to tell from a picture which your trunk has, but the fiber lasted longer and is usually in better condition. Many people now remove the canvas and refinish the wood body of the trunk and replace the leather tie down straps. The locks on these trunks are often good quality solid brass locks. The metal bumper hardware is either brass plated steel or sometimes solid brass. The interiors were usually lined in cloth, sometimes linen, and sometimes with paper.  I'm attaching a page from a 1911 trunk catalog of a very similar trunk so you can see the details they gave about their trunk and the sizes in which they were made. In good unrestored condition these trunks usually sell in the range of about $100 to $200. If in very good condition and with the original tray the price could be a higher.   I hope that helps.

Marvin Miller  

Collectibles-General (Antiques)

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Marvin D. Miller


I can answer questions related to antique trunks, their age, manufacturers, styles, patents, etc, including all types of trunks such as steamer trunks, saratoga trunks, Victorian trunks, slat trunks, toy and doll trunks, stagecoach trunks, valises, hat trunks, and others.


I have over 40 years experience in trunk restoration, collecting, and research. I own the most extensive collection of historical documents, catalogs, maker's labels, cards, etc. related to antique trunks. I am always updating my inventory of historical documents and antique trunks.

Association of American Antique Trunk Restorers, President.

Primarily on the website Cotton & Quail Antiques newspaper (Southeast). Antique Journal magazine.

Bachelor of Arts from the University of Georgia. I have conducted extensive research related to the topic of trunk manufacturers and trunk styles in the U.S. and Europe.

Past/Present Clients
Have consulted for the Pawn Stars TV show on antique trunks. I have sold antique trunks to museums in California and Florida and to customers around the world.

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