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Collectibles-General (Antiques)/Vintage trunk - Rogers Trunk Corp, Follow up

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QUESTION: Hi!

I acquired this trunk at an estate sale recently. I was attracted to it as it has the inside tray and the key. The tag tells me quite a bit about the trunk, but I would like to know more.

When did the company go out of business (I don't find info. on the internet)?

How rare is this piece?
What style is it?
Anything else you might know.

Have a GREAT evening!

1922 Rogers Ad
1922 Rogers Ad  
ANSWER: Bill,
There were actually several large trunk companies in Petersburg, VA including Rogers and it was the trunk capital of the world for a while. Seward Trunk Company was one of the first there and the largest and is still in business today, under a different owner of course. There is very little information available on most trunk companies and it's quite hard to find. I do a great deal of research on them and still have very little on many of the companies such as Rogers. I can tell you that I believe they were in business from around 1910 to the 1950's but can't give you exact dates. But like other companies I know they made a wide variety of trunk styles, but mostly the large wardrobe trunks with the hangers and drawers. See the advertisement picture I attached. These were very popular in between 1920 and the early 1950's. I see a Rogers trunk now and then, but there were many companies in the U.S. and so Rogers trunks are not considered rare or more valuable than any other American trunk.  I would need to see pictures of the trunk to know if there is something unusual or rare about it, but that would be a real exception.  It is harder to find the trunk with the interior tray and the original key, but keys are available for many old trunks if people know where to check.  I sell some now and then. But if you are able to send a picture or two of your trunk I could tell you more about the style and probable age of it.  I hope this helpss.
Marvin

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Trunk Back
Trunk Back  
Trunk Side
Trunk Side  
QUESTION: Thank you for your response. I have attached a couple more pictures for you. Unfortunately, I can only send you two. I've attached the back and a side. I don't know if there is anything "special" about it.  

I would like to understand the badge that says CONT . 257 PHILA.. Do you think the 6/28/21 is the manufacturing date? The lock is a Corbin Lock Company lock, marked RC60.

Thanks again! Have a GREAT day!
Bill

ANSWER: Bill,
There were no pictures with your first question, so these help a lot. Since there were many types of trunks it is very hard to give specific details without seeing some pictures. I don't have a picture of that "badge" or label that says Cont. 257 Phila. but I have seen similar ones in the past and what that means is that this trunk was made under government contract for the U.S. military under specifications of the contract issued on 6/28/21. I can also see it was made in the olive drab color for the Army, so it was made sometime after June 1921, probably within a year or so.  It is a military footlocker trunk and several trunk companies made trunks like this for the military under these contracts at various times. They used locks from several lock companies including Corbin, Eagle, and Yale. I see from the stickers that the trunk was shipped to or from Germany at one time. These were issued to American troops and sometimes they were shipped with their personal belongings back to the states.  I can't tell you what the small metal tag is for, possibly a military control tag of some type. I get emails and questions about these now and then and they aren't really rare, but are harder to find in good shape, with the tray and key. So now you do know the age and purpose of the trunk and I hope you enjoy using it.  Please leave feedback for the reply if you can.    Thanks, Marvin  

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Trunk Front
Trunk Front  

Trunk Plate
Trunk Plate  
QUESTION: Well, I am sorry the pictures didn't get to you the first time. I have attached them to this email.

I am excited that it is a military trunk. If the new picture of the tag helps with more information, then I gladly accept it.

Of course, I'll review the terrific responses you have provided.

Bill

Answer
Hi Bill, That's no problem.  Yes, that's the typical brass label put on these for the military contract. The contracts were issued from Philadelphia, but the New York Depot is the U.S. military Quartermaster depot where these were delivered to.  The trunk was probably made in 1921 to 2922.  I forgot to mention that these trunks are covered with a hard pressed heat treated material called vulcanized fiber.  This fiber covering was used on many trunks in the early to mid 1900's and it held up better than leather. It was made in many colors also.  Thanks for the feedback.   
Marvin  

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Marvin D. Miller

Expertise

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.

Experience

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.

Organizations
Association of American Antique Trunk Restorers, President.

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

Education/Credentials
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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