We give good savings on the items we offer “as-is” so our customers can not only save a lot of money but can take pride in restoring a piece of history themselves. We only charge what we need to stay in business, the item is saved for posterity, and you gain a nice conversation piece. You save some money, we save some work and we both save some history! Some of the following are in our private collection but we’ve run out of space and realize we just can’t keep them all so you can win too.
Western Squares Barrel Stave from 1870s
Barrel stave trunks were named due to their tops resembling the side of a barrel. They were popular for a number of years around the 1870s, as was the Western Squares paper covering. This particular trunk has some elegant hardwood staves with lots of little rosettes mounted on them. The latches are our absolute favorite with spread eagles on them. They are quite unique too with their swing type “triggers”. Quite a bit of the Western Squares paper is still intact. Inside the trunk lid is the original almost mint condition lithograph of what appears to be a redcoat soldier. Most of the other lining of the lid is in really good condition too. This is another example of what we sometimes find and don’t have the heart to alter. We have cleaned it up, sanitized it and made sure it’s safe and functional. If you are looking for a beginner’s candidate for restoration then this one is for you. Help us preserve history and we can help you save a lot of money. The trunk measures 29″ x 16″ x 20″ and weighs 40 lbs. We found it in Bath, ME on one of our autumn trunk-hunting excursions. This is trunk # SU0901 and it is FOR SALE.
Short Stave from 1860s
This style is quite rare and was popular in the 1860s. The wooden staves or slats on the outside of most trunks this shape go from end to end. This style has them shorter and centered. The end caps of most short staves are solid brass. Inside the trunk is the remains of a lid compartment and an intact lithograph of a lady. When we found this one we were so pleased with its looks that we didn’t want to change it in any way. We have cleaned it up, sanitized it and made sure it’s safe and functional. If you are looking for a beginner’s candidate for restoration then this one is for you. Help us preserve history and we can help you save a lot of money. The trunk measures 29″ x 18″ x 22″ and weighs 42 lbs. We found it in Bath, ME on one of our autumn trunk-hunting excursions. This is trunk # SU0901 and it is FOR SALE.
Trunk with Exceptional Artwork
This trunk has some really nice and especially unique artwork in it. The entire trunk is original, inside and out. It’s in excellent condition with it’s brown exterior and beautiful artwork inside. We’ve never seen this artwork in any other trunk in all our years (since 1972). The tray is in good condition with only the lids needing new cloth hinges. The handles are missing but can easily be replaced. This is a large trunk with lots of storage space inside and could be displayed open. This trunk is so unique we didn’t have the heart to do anything to it other than dusting it off after we found it. It was made by M. M. Secor of Racine, WI in the 1890s; the original maker’s label is still in the tray. The trunk measures 34″ long x 20″ deep (front to back) x 24″ tall and weighs 54 lbs. This is trunk # ST0101 & it is FOR SALE. We found it in St. Louis, MO.
Hide covered trunks are some of the earliest trunks made, most go back to at least the late 1700s to early 1800s. They were tough, functional trunks with little more adornment than brass nail heads, often arranged in a pattern spelling out the owner’s initials. Simple but sturdy locks were used as were hand-wrought iron handles. They were lined with newspaper (lucky for us it was the most available) or hand-decorated paper, sometimes a mixture of these; newspaper sometimes had added decoration in the form of many dots or squares printed atop the newsprint. Some trunks were left unlined. Hides used to cover the outside included, but were certainly not limited to deerskin, cowhide and horsehide. Deerskin is our favorite here since cowhide and horsehide are usually quite coarse. The makers of these historical objects were proud of their work and most of the earliest labels we’ve come across were inside this type trunk. The styles of the trunks varied from small rectangular document cases to much larger flat tops and round tops. Everything in life has its good and bad and sometimes the good and bad get shuffled around a bit. This trunk family holds some of the most precious of histories but are not the most attractive of antique trunks. This has caused many of them to end up being lost forever. Fortunately some end up in museums, others in private collections like our own at Treasured Chests. We however can’t keep everything we want, as you might guess and we would rather see these valuable items find their way back to their origins if possible. All the trunks below are offered as-is; they however, are safe and sanitary. We will make repairs at extra cost but as these are so old and historical, we’d prefer not.
Nathan Neat Round Top, Hide-Covered Trunk
One of our favorite trunk makers, Nathan Neat’s company was in business in Boston from at least 1825 to 1891. They produced many high quality hide-covered trunks. This particular trunk is in very good condition and still has its original label, in fact it’s all original. We’ll never know who JBK was but the initials are still there in brass nail heads, on the lid. The original dust shield is still around the lower lip of the lid. The original lining is still mostly intact and though slightly stained it’s sanitary. The trunk measures 24″ wide x 12″ deep (front to back) x 11″ tall. It dates back to the early 1800s. We found it in King, NC on one of our local trunk-hunting trips. This is trunk # BQ0101 & it is FOR SALE.
Document cases were used for miscellaneous storage but were intended for important papers and writing materials. They are some of the earliest examples of European and American craftsmen. Many document cases were elaborately decorated with brass nails, often forming the owner’s initials on the lids.
Atkins A. Clark
Atkins A. Clark was a trunk maker from at least 1845 to 1859 in Boston, MA. His son Atkins A. Clark Jr. was also a trunk maker. Below is a fine example of his work. It measures 10″ x 7″ x 6″. We found it in Hampden, ME on one of our trunk-hunting excursions. This is trunk # BQ0707 & it is FOR SALE.
Price: $399.00 FREE SHIPPING!
Nathan Neat was a trunk maker in Boston, MA at least in 1825 to 1891. He was in business with his son from 1852 to 1863. Below is a document case from Nathan Neat. It measures 14″ x 9″ x 7″. We found it in Rural Hall, NC. This is trunk #BQ0708 & it is FOR SALE.
Price: $399.00 FREE SHIPPING!
Isaac Libbey was a trunk & chest maker in the mid 1800s. His shop was in Rochester, NH, on the road to Great Falls (now Somersworth). He also had a general store and taught school part time. His house and the shed where he made his trunks and had his general store are still standing in Rochester. Below is a fine example of his work. It measures 7″ x 5″ x 4″. We found it in Bath, ME on one of our trunk-hunting excursions. The original lock still works; an antique key is provided. This is trunk # BQ0709 & it is FOR SALE.
Price: $399.00 FREE SHIPPING!
Known as Wardrobe Trunks or Traveling Wardrobes, these trunks are some of the largest and heaviest ever made and are designed to stand on end for packing or open use. One half of the trunk, usually the right half, is filled with drawers while the other half has clothes hangers, usually a shoe box, and sometimes an ironing board and even a flat iron. Pity the people who had to move these monsters around, most are heavy even when empty! Wardrobe trunks have become more and more popular just in the last few years. Many are restored and then used in bedrooms of small apartments as a combination chest of drawers and closet. Most of them were made in the 1920s and 1930s with some going back nearer the turn of the century. Note how the upper part of the left half of the one above opens up to allow better access to the hangers. The two chrome rods in the same area telescope out to give the hangers more room when the trunk is open.
Wardrobe Doll Trunk
Our latest wardrobe find. At first we weren’t sure if this was a small wardrobe trunk or a large doll wardrobe trunk then we saw the wardrobe section. The size of it and the three hangers indicate this is a doll trunk. Doll trunks were made for little girls to carry the clothes for their dolls. They were usually made to be very lightweight so many have not survived. Fewer wardrobe doll trunks were made than other styles which makes this one quite rare. Made of thicker pine this one is much stronger. It’s all original; we’ve only cleaned and touched it up in places so it’s otherwise how we found it. We’ve added an antique doll dress from our own collection to complete the trunk. The original lock still works and an antique key is provided. We found it in Jonesville, NC on one of our local trunk-hunting outings. It measures 25″ wide x 7″ deep x 21″ tall opened and 11″ x 12″ x 21″ closed. It weighs 8 lbs. This trunk dates back to the 1930s & is FOR SALE. If you like it as well as everyone around here then click here to order it from our Etsy shop before someone else snatches it up. We’ll get it packed and on its way to you.
Price: $349.00 FREE SHIPPING!
(“Big Brudder” not included)
Generic 1930s Wardrobe Trunk
Thousands, hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions of trunks, especially wardrobe trunks were made with no identification on them. By the time wardrobe trunks came along trunk manufacturing was mass. Many makers manufactured them for big retail giants such as Montgomery Ward, Sears-Roebuck and others. Some of these stores added their own name, most did not. The peak of their production was the 1930s. Built extremely tough, many have survived to this day. Although we don’t know the maker we do know the name of a previous owner of this one since it’s stenciled on one end, along with her town, Waynesboro, VA. (For her privacy only the buyer will see her last name.) We found this one recently and decided to fetch it home. We touched it up just enough to make it safe and sanitary and you can do any restoration you want, or leave it as it is. It’s in quite good shape in spite of the locking part of the hasp being gone and the drawer fronts a bit faded. It measures 22″ x 24″ x 41″ closed and 44″ x 12″ x 41″ open. It weighs 85 lbs. We found it in Pilot Mountain, NC on one of our local trunk hunts. This trunk dates back to the 1930s & is FOR SALE. (SOLD)