Antique Seaman's Chest Wrought Hardware & Nails Circa 1740 - For Sale
Antique Seaman's Chest Wrought Hardware & Nails Circa 1740
Dimensions are 35.5"L X 22.5"W X 27"H. Pine construction with very old green over red (or salmon)paint. Hand wrought handles, hinges, hasp, and nails. It appears to make this more watertight, some rawhide was secured over the seams by huge hand forged nails and it made the change from red to green after than, old. The nails extend into the chest and are bent over. The shanks of the nails vary in length and form like the heads. On the back side there is a small wax stamp (like they used to do to seal a letter) stating "customs permission" "B10" (I think) and a symbol I do not recognize but
probably an early customs symbol before the scales symbol was used. I mention this as I would imagine it has been a bit since the customs department has wax stamped items and the green paint is under this seal and not on it. The green is quite old as is the customs department.On one side of this chest are two forged metal squares I would venture to say were used to secure the chest to the ship. In rough seas on an old sailboat, if things are not secure, they tend to become missiles. There is no seam in the metal squares. The hinges shown are certainly very old. They are the second set of hinges. Traces of the first set remain in the same fashion as the second but under the rawhide in contact with the original color. The wrought handles, hasp, and metal squares extend into the chest interior correctly. The hasp will accept a padlock.The structure is super sound with no decay or weakness. Old filler is seen on the bottom attending to board shrinkage which is correct. Some old tool marks are noted in the appropriate curve and join areas. Sits just slightly back from the two guys carrying it dragging the back bottom first before setting it down. The inside is clean and very suitable for storage as you wish. The outside has been treated with linseed oil and a shot of wax. It is very smooth to the touch.I tend to approach old chests cautiously but cannot find fault in this one. The age is an estimate but I feel comfortable at 200 years anyway. Should breeze through another 100.