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Collectibles-General (Antiques)/inherited cross slat trunk


I'm looking to find more information on the trunk I received, as family members are no help. It is a 30 inch, flat top, cross slat trunk covered in green metal(not army green. Interior is lined in paper with lid paper striped mauve with print of Deer Hunter with deer on saddle.  It has wood screws, missing leather side handles, and probable missing leather strap that went around it.  The metal decorative brackets holding the wood slats have a patent mark of 1880.  The lock, Yale and Towne. There are no other marking to be found. I'm guessing it to be from 1880-1915 in its date.
Thank you so much!

1911 trunk catalog
1911 trunk catalog  

Trunk chromolithograph
Trunk chromolithograph  
There were many American trunk companies that made the style trunk you describe. The cross slat trunk design and hardware for them was patented in March 1880 by Charles Taylor of Chicago, but the style was made mostly from the 1890's to about 1915 with the same style hardware which had the date stamped on them. They were made in many models and sizes and with either metal, canvas, leather, and even paper covering. Many had the Yale & Towne locks, but some had locks by Eagle, Star, Excelsior, or other lock makers. Most of these trunks did have paper lining and they always had a tray and sometimes two inside. The printed pictures for trunks were made in dozens of designs and I've seen the one you describe in a number of trunks I've worked on.  I'm attaching a picture of one for you, which may be the same as yours. I'm also attaching a picture from a 1911 trunk catalog of a flat top, cross slat trunk style. This was one of many trunk styles made during this time period. Some had leather straps around then and some did not. Many trunk makers did not put labels on all of their trunks, so many are found with no label. Good quality leather handles and straps in the original style are available now online.  Since this style was very popular and they were made for many years, they are still antiques but the value is not generally higher than about $200 to $300 in good original condition. I hope the information and catalog page is helpful.

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.

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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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