Terry, my grandmother recently passed and while cleaning out her place my uncle asked me if I would like to take her old mosler safe. I would like to keep it as a memento rather than a functional safe because I'm sure just by looking at it it won't meet any safety standards. It appears to be a wall safe that was removed because there are mounting brackets on the side. I have been trying to determine the approximate age of the safe so I can place where my grandparents were at in life when they bought it to add some historical context to it. After researching on the internet I'm guessing it is sometime around the 1930s but most of the information I found was from your articles so I decided to write you and see if you can give me a better estimate. The safe is about 1ft by 1ft and 6 inches deep. It has a shelf inside that has broken but can't be removed because it is to large for the door opening. The front says mosler safe co. New York. The serial number is below the dial and is 334688. I have the combo but there are no tags or identifying marks inside the safe I greatly appreciate any info you can give me as I cherish this piece of history from my grandmother.
Answer Hi Brian,
Yes, this was one of Mosler's hinged, non-lug, round door, chests. It was designed to be used as a wall safe or inside of another safe. Based on the serial number it would be from the early 1930's (1931-33).
While this container DOES meet MINIMUM burglary standards, it is NOT a fire resistive container, however I would not recommend using it for overnight storage of any cash, jewelry or valuable documents.
Even though it does meet the minimum requirements because the lock and other parts are not readily available, it is considered obsolete.
Obviously this wouldn't be considered antique as it is not over 100 years old, but it is collectible due to its size.
During the early 1900's (1900-1950's) Mosler acquired a number of different safe companies, possibly to increase the diversity of their product, more than likely to simply eliminate some of the competition. In some of these cases they would utilize the existing facilities until they either completely closed out that particular line, or rolled it in to their main factory in Hamilton, OH. so your safe may have been made in New York.
Mosler also used a number of different locks in their round door safes, so without seeing what you actually have, I wouldn't hazard a guess as to what is installed.
I think that its great that you have chosen to save this piece of history to be passed along to future generations.
Hope this helps,
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Thank you so much for the quick response and great information. What a helpful website
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