Collectibles-General (Antiques)/Old Trunk


I have recently purchased this old trunk and would like to know if anyone can tell me anything about it ... how old is it? and where does it come from? ...  other information about it are welcome.

with best regards  Lene Nea Lund  Denmark

Trunk from 1890
Trunk from 1890  
Hello Lene,
Your trunk was made in the U.S. sometime between about 1885 to 1900. This is a style called a Cross Slat trunk which was first patented by Charles Taylor of Chicago, U.S.A. in 1880, but they were made by many U.S. trunk companies, mostly in Chicago, Milwaukee, Detroit, and in the mid-western area. Some companies in Newark, NJ also made similar trunks such as Goldsmith & Son Trunk company. Some other companies that made these were Taylor Trunk Works in Chicago, Secor trunk company in Racine, and Romadka in Milwaukee, but there were many others. Many of the trunks are found without a label,so that normally makes it impossible to know which company made it. Your trunk appears to be covered with leather and this was a high quality trunk based on the covering, solid brass lock and ornate hardware. These trunks were made with either metal, leather, or canvas covering. These trunks were very strong and used for travel all over the world. I am attaching a picture of a similar trunk, but metal covered, made by a company in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, about 1890. You can see some of the information that they provided about their trunk.  That is a very nice trunk and appears to be in very good condition. The value of this type in the U.S. is usually in the range of $300 to $600, and higher if they are in very excellent condition including the interior.  I hope this helps.  

Collectibles-General (Antiques)

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


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 I own the most extensive collection of historical documents, catalogs, maker's labels, cards, etc.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 I am always updating my inventory of historical documents and antique trunks.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.

©2017 All rights reserved.