Exploring the History & Makers of Antique Trunks: A Brettuns Village Archive


Exploring the History & Makers of Antique Trunks: A Brettuns Village Archive

Common Trunk Makers and Their History

For years, we’ve been gathering information about the most common trunk makers from years past. If we see a label on a truck or an advertisement in a magazine, we’ll put it here! You can also contribute by sending in a picture of a trunk label or something invigorating, please feel free to share it at

Trunk Makers

Abel & Bach Trunks
& Bags
Milwaukee  Made
and sold many trunks and also suitcasesmany of the cases were covered
with walrus leather.They called their company
the ABC of Trunks and Bags (for Abel Bach Co.)  Some
Abrams Trunk Co
Chicago – usually has
a brass tag on top
Adams & Ilsley
150 Tremont Street,
Boston; formerly John Baker & Co trunks & saddlery
Early 1900s maker of
wardrobe trunks and suitcases
Ajax Trunks
New York – modern era
(1930s?) trunks, usually covered in black trunk fibre
Allen, Otis
Nos 35-41 Merrimac Street,
Lowell, Mass, est 1839
American Trunk Co
Famous ATCO Trunks,
Cincinatti, OH
A. Andretti Trunk Co.
Eagle Trademark Trunks,
San Francisco
Arata, L.
Trunks, Bags, &
Satchels, Established 1832, 
NE Corner of 13th &
Sansom Streets, Philadelphia
Thanks to Kathy S for
this one!



Atkinson, John S.
Label:  “Manufacturer
of and Dealer in lap robes, trunks, bags, blankets, and general horse furnishings”
48 Fairfield AveBridgeport, Conn.



Atlanta Trunk Factory
Thanks to Emily Brosius
for this one
Atwood & Gould Trunk
Patented 18??
Congress st ,Boston Mass
Autorobe Trunk Co.
Makers of automobile
trunks in the 1920s and 1930s.
See some old magazine
ads here


Austin Trunk Factory
I have an old trunk
in excellent condition made in 1880 at the Austin Trunk Factory, Austin
TX.  The address reads 611 Congress St. 
The street is now called
Congress Avenue. It’ a round top with a woman’s picture and the maker’s
logo has a cartoon man with an alligator. 
You may want to add the
maker to your list since it’s not there yet.  Best regards, -Matt
”  Thanks, Matt!



Aylward, Michael
saddle, bridle, trunk
and harness maker, 9½ S. 4th  Street
Shown in 1825
Philadelphia City Directory
(Special thanks to Matt
Ainslie for providing info on makers from Philadelphia)



BB&B Manufacturing
Pittsburgh, NYC, Pasadena
Bains, George B &
Chestnut Street, Philadelphia
Makers of Bags and Trunks
for All Types of Travel
Baker, John B, &
Saddlery & Harness
House, Sole Leather Trunks
150 Tremont Street, Boston,
est 1826


Bal, William Trunk Co.
Bal-Built Trunks (with
brass tag) Philadelphia
Baldwin & Company
Trunks & Bags
Brass tag on lid, B
on handle end caps
Bankhardt Baggage
Cincinatti, OH
Barnard Brothers Trunk
& Travelling Bag Co.
Main Street, Worcester,
Barnum Trunk Co
Brass tag on lid, paper
label inside says Order #___ with trunk number


Bates & Co
Paper label inside:
This trunk made expressly for Bates & Co., 
Leading dealers in Trunks,
Boots, Shoes, Hats, Militaria, and Bags
Somersworth, New Hampshire



Beals and Selkirk Trunk
Wyandotte and Flint,
Michigan – a large company with a lot of employees.
See some old photos and
labels here


Beehive Trunk Co
Produced by L.E. Morrison
and Co.
Belber Co.
Philadelphia, Chicago,
This company made quite
a few trunks.  More info


Bell, William
62 Tremont Street, Boston
“Manufacturers and Repairers
of Sole Leather Trunks, Fancy Trunks, Valises, 
Carpet Bags, Dress Trunks,
and Sample Cases, &c”

Verified to be in business
during 1840s and 1850s.



Bellingham Harness Co
211 W Holly St
Bellingham, WA

Thanks to Del Vosburg
for sending this one in!

Bellton Co
Wardrobe trunks, 1930s
Benson, James Co Ltd
Sole Leather trunks,
1800s, London
Many thanks to Paula
for contributing this one


Besbuilt Trunk Company
Newark, NJ
Betterbuilt Trunks
Usually has BB on clamps
and end caps

Biltmore Trunk Co
Thanks to Frank Piteo for the following: Began in 1945 in Brooklyn, NY
Staff included Isidore, Leon, Marty, and Bernard Singer

Frank Piteo started working at Biltmore in 1985 and is still making quality trunks



Bingham Trunks
Buffalo, NY  1930s
May have been a retailer, or perhaps a descendant of Buffalo Trunk Mfg.
Boelter, F. 
Tool Case and Automobile
Trunk Maker
2713 Lincoln Ave, Chicago
Thanks to Renelle U. for
sending this one to us!


Bogert, James
40 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, Indiana
(submitted by Cheryl Perkins
– thanks!)
On Hudson Street in NYC
Jenny Lind style trunks (Thanks, Neil!) 


Boston Baggage
(submitted by Jeff – thanks!)
Books Trunk Co.
Otho Leslie Books was
the owner of Books Trunk Co. Books and Jackson Co. between 1904 and 1942. 
He was born on August 28,
1879 in Huntingdon County, PA. Books married Vesta May Stofer on September
27, 1905. 
They had two kids, Otho
Samuel Books and Marjorie May Books. Otho Leslie Books died on February
27, 1905, in San Diego, CA

(submitted by Susie K. –



Boston Baggage
(submitted by Jeff – thanks!)
Breck, T, Trunk Maker
24 North Main Street,
Providence, Rhode Island
Brinkhaus & Block
Louisville, KY
Established 1880, still
around in 1902.  See their building here.
Thanks to Cathy G. for discovering
this company and passing along the info to us.
Brown, J E
Meriden, CT, on E. Main
Thanks to Andy M. for discovering
this company and passing along the info to us.


Bruff, Robert
297 N. 2nd Street, Philadelphia
Shown in 1825
Philadelphia City Directory
Buffalo Trunk Mfg Co
Theophil Speyser, (a
German immigrant who was a furniture/coffin maker) incorporated his growing
business in 1906 as the Buffalo Trunk Manufacturing Company. He was however
making trunks, (and much more) starting around 1879.
Thanks very much to Charity
Disbrow for sending this one in


Burr, Robert
Hanover Street, then
moved to Tremont Street, Boston  1850s
Burr, William
Tremont Street, moved
to Congress Street, Boston, 1840s, 1850s
Burroughs, George
E. Water Street, Milwaukee,
Black canvas trunks, many
were very, very large
George always signed the
inside label that described the company’s history



Butterfield Trunk Co
Seattle, Wash.
Many sizes of common trunks
C&M Trunk and Case
Black cases, rubberized
Our pal Grant Rice found
a wardrobe trunk made by C&M with NYC on the tag.  Thanks, Grant!


Cadmus, Jeremiah
Market Street, Philadelphia
Brass button trunks, also made shoes
Capitol Trunk Co
St Paul, MN  Operated
in the 1920s and 30s
Thanks to Andy M. for discovering
this company and passing along the info to us.


Carmen, Charles
Poughkeepsie, NY
Carver, Jacob
trunk & shoemaker,
377 N 2d Street
Shown in 1825
Philadelphia City Directory


 Carson, Pirie,
Scott & Co.
No. 8-12 State Street,
Madison, Wisconsin
and Wabash Avenue, Chicago“Fine Leather and Travel
Goods of All Types”



Casey, M.S., Trunk Makers
5th Avenue, NY, Makers
of Vaudeville Trunks
Cattnach, John
“Importers of German
Leather Trunks & Luggage Products”
Cavalier Co.
Chattanooga, brass tag
on lid tells who gave/received trunk
Central Trunk Company
Philadelphia  Established
in 1856
Cherry, M. Trunks 
and Traveling Bags
226 Fifth Ave, New York
Thanks to Andy M. for discovering
this company and passing along the info to us.


Chilton Guthrie &
522 W. Main Street,
Louisville, Kentucky
Goods to Order, Trunks,
Valises, & Traveling Bags
Thanks to Donald Driver
for sending this one in.



Atkins A Clark
Clark, W. S., Co
15 School Street
Boston, MA
Springfield, Mass.
Label states “Made of Basswood”
Clinton Wall Trunk Co
Wall trunks
Clinton, Massachusetts
New Haven, CT, 
Retail shop, made some trunks,
sold trunks amde by others.
Colt, Samuel L.
167 Baltimore Street,
Baltimore “Manufacturer of Trunks of Every Description for 
Traveling, Packing, and
Domestic Use”
This guy also patented some



Cooper, George
Established 1859
Crawford & Whitten
Clarksburg, Ohio
Crego & Co.
Makers  21 Washington
Chicago, IL
Operating in the 1860Special thanks to Sara V.
for sending this info to us!



Crestein Trunk Co
Newark, New Jersey
Crockett, William
Concord, NH, verified
in business 1838
Crouch & Fitzgerald
Established 1839, high-priced
trunks  New York City
Cummings, Josiah &
82 Union Street, Boston 
“Sole and Hub Leather Trunks
Made to Order”
Cushing, Charles F.
New Bedford, Mass.
Established 1900
D  (usually has
a lion standing next to it)
see Drucker
Davis, John
trunk-maker, 73 N 5th
(also listed as such in
this location in 1823 dir.)
Shown in 1825
Philadelphia City Directory



Davis Trunk Factory
Years of operation 1889-1920
Los Angeles
Dennison, E.C. Co
1024-32 N. High Street,
Columbus, Ohio 
Makers of Fireproof Wardrobe
(asbestos inside)



Dependo Trunk &
Bag Co
Petersburg, Virginia
(part of Seward?)  – wardrobes
Deppe, AH
‘Manufacturers of Trunks’
Fifth St & Nicollet
Ave, Minneapolis, MN
Thanks to Wanda M for contributing
this maker to our list 
Dethloff, A.W. &
725-15thSt. Denver,Colo.
Brass Tag on top.  Tel Main-5987
Thanks to Warren Behm
for this one.


Detroit Trunk Co
Detroit, Michigan
Derco Trunk Manufacturing
Los Angeles
Dick, J. H.
Madison Street, Jefferson
Street, Chicago
Trunks, Traveling Bags,
Ladies Satchels, Etc.
Sent in by Tim Harris.



No. 642 Main St. TERR HAUTE Ind. 
Sent in by Michael Holmes
–   Thanks!


 Dooley, James
104 Third Avenue, New
Trunks, Bags, Hat Cases,


 Dolittle, M. J.
Saddler and Trunk Maker,
est. 1830  Burlington, Vermont 
 Drew & Sons
Wardrobe trunks, US
patent #16118 
 Drucker, N. &
(also Mendel-Drucker) 


Common and Wardrobe
913 Broadway, Cincinatti These trunks usually have
his ‘D’ with a Lion 

and the words “Beauty and



DuBosq, Henry
trunkmaker, 90 Shippen
Shown in 1825
Philadelphia City Directory
Listed as a glass silverer
on S. 6th St. in 1805, but had become a trunk maker 

at the address above by
the time of the 1810 directory



 Dufficy, Thomas
and Co
Trunk Makers 


Louisville, Kentucky
Steamer-sizes and smaller
trunks with leather straps
Duffy, L.J.
New Orleans, Patent
Date Dec 7, 1880
LJD on metal corners 


 Duguid Brothers
Toledo, Ohio 
 Duluth Trunk Factory
220 West Superior Street
Joseph Trudinsky, Prop.

Wall trunks, patent dates

By New Jersey Trunk Co.
Wardrobe trunks, 1920s
or so
Newark, NJThanks to Sommer for sending
this one in!



 Dus-Pruf Auto
Trunk Co
414 West Jefferson Avenue,
Detroit, MI
Patent date found on labels:
May 25,1926


 Eagle Trunk Factory
Manufacturers of the
Patent Tray
Operated by Smith Brothers
in OshKosh, Wisconsin
Later became OshKosh Trunk



 Eagle Trunk Factory
Manufacturers of the
Patent Tray
Operated by Smith Brothers
in OshKosh, Wisconsin
Later became OshKosh Trunk



 Easter & Winship
Boston, est. 1858
Winship later went off on
his own (see Winship)
 Eau Claire Trunk
Eau Claire, Wisconsin
“Travelers Goods, Sample
Trunks & Cases a Specialty”
 Eggeman Duguid
& Company
Toledo, Ohio
Makers of Wall Trunks
 El Paso Trunk
El Paso, Texas
 Emporium Trunk
and Bag Co.
1514 Milwaukee Ave,
Chicago, Illinois  Blue metal, lock by Eagle
Sent in by Rebecca Haas
– thanks a million!


 Enderbrock, F.
Trunk Co.
St. Joseph, Missouri,
NW Corner of 3rd & Felix Streets 
Made in Canada, Sold
in New York City 
 Evansville Trunk
315 Main Street Evansville,
Thanks to TJ Bynum for
this one


established in 1920s,
made wardrobes  Founded by Goldsmith, 
along with Neverbreak, Nevermar,
and others


Excelsior Trunk Co.
New Jersey
 Faber, H.C. and
Utica, New York, Established
September 4, 1883
Most have brass plate on
front, some are sole leather
Some tags and labels are
posted here



Farel, W.C, & Sons
Only have seen one of
these – strange lid configuration
Patented March 1, 1887,
Buffalo, NY


Feigenbaum Trunk &
Bag Co.
Cleveland, Ohio
(Thanks, Shawna!)
Ferguson, George
trunk maker, 3 Norris�s
(listed as such but in Rose
Alley in 1823 dir.)
Shown in 1825
Philadelphia City Directory



 Fibreware Specialty
Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
Some leather trunks
 Forgie Maas &
106 Water Street, Boston 
Makers of Doll Trunks, est.
 Fox Brothers Trunk
Houlton, Maine
Standard Box Trunks with
Canvas Covering
Franklin Williams
See also McGee – these
two companies shared the same address in Baltimore
Freling, N. M.
“Manufacturer of Trunks
and Valises” Kansas City MO
Thanks to Cynthia Wong
for sending this one in.


 Fricke, Fred
No 5 Chicago Street
Elgin, Illinois

Canvas covered box trunks

 Gallacher, James
Salt Lake City 
 Gausepol, E. J.
& Co.
Hide-covered trunks
40 W. Washington Street,
 Germuiller, F.
Trunk Company
Established 1850
Washington, D.C.
 Gimbel Brothers
New York, Paris
Patent dates 1903, 1912
 Gillmore Trunk
& Bag Co.
5th Avenue, New York
also 18 Fourth Avenue, Below
8th Street
“Manufacturer of Fine Traveling
Trunks, Bags, Satchels, etc.”
 Gillmore Trunk
18 Fourth Avenue, Below
8th Street, New York
“Manufacturer of Fine Traveling
Trunks, Bags, Satchels, etc.”


Girard Trunk & Bag
M. Malamedson &
Son. Props
604 W. Girard avenue – 1011
N.6 th st., Philadelphia


Goldberg Brothers
Trunk Manufacturers,
312 Market Street, Philadelphia. 1878 catalog shows Bridal trunks,
Saratoga trunks, Monitor trunks, etc.
Thanks to Marvin of ThisOldTrunk.Com
for sending this one in


Goldmsith & Sons
Goldsmith Co.
Made trunks under several
trade names, including Neverbreak, Nevermar, Everlast, mostly in the 1910s
to 1940s. 
In the 1940s Goldsmith made
footlockers under contract to the US Army


Gorman, Charles
Known for making ornate
dresser trunks
Thanks to Andy M. for discovering
this company and passing along the info to us.
 Goyard (Edward)
Made in France, often
with brass buttons and corners.  Red criss-crossed ribbons on underside
of lid 
Gromm, W.F.
Denver, Colorado, founded
in 1873 (thanks, Hope!)
Hip-roof style trunks 


Groskopf Brothers
Manufacturers of Trunks
and Bags
Thought by some to be a
retail store only.  No patents.


Grube-Meyering Trunk
Chicago – Made wardrobe
trunks in the 1920s
Gufoni, Italy
Located in Firenze
From what we’ve seen at
least part of their business was selling USA-made trunks
which perhaps helps explain
how so many immigrants had trunks made in the US.

Thanks to Andy M. for discovering
this company and passing along the info to us.

Guggenheim Trunk &
Bag Co
Philadelphia – contracted
manufacturing to Seward, common trunk styles

Trunk Advertisements, Postcards, Labels, etc.

Autorobe trunks

These old wardrobe trunks were made by Autorobe. 
These were designed just for trips by auto – sized correctly to fit in
your trunk.  The car’s trunk I mean.  Your trunk in the car trunk. 
Got it?  Confusing, but it all makes sense when you try to drive a
trunk, or …forget it. 

These were made in Virginia beginning in
about 1912.  We’re not sure when they went under, but it was somewhere
before 1940.


Belber made loads of suitcases and wardrobe
trunks, starting before the turn of the last century.  Their wardrobe
trunks were very well made.  They even marketed a line of collapsible
hangers, made of rope as shown in the ad on the right.  For more on
Belber click
Belber trunk historyBelber Trunk Co
William Crockett & Co
William Crockett
& Co.

Early to mid-1800s, harness maker who
made trunks as a sideline.
Charles F Cushing Trunk Maker
Charles F. Cushing

Apparently this guy made trunks in New
Bedford, Mass.  We’ve only seen his advertising card, never have been
able to find a trunk with his label on it.
Duguid Brothers Trunk Co

Wall trunks were made by several companies,
most famous of which was the M.M. Secors line.  Duguid Brothers were
less well known, and their trunks sold more to the middle class of travelers. 
Not steerage, not sunny topside, right smack amidships.  Handy for
pushing against the wall in a small room.


Made in Utica, New York, starting in 1890. 
They made trunks from several varieties of wood, including mahogany, teak,
pine, oak, birch, and ash.  Maybe others that we haven’t seen yet. 
Usually has a brass tag on the outside, near the lock.  More tags
and labels are posted here.
Faber Trunk CoFaber Trunk

Find one of these old Florida Trunks and you’ve
got a keeper on your hands.  Many of them were covered in real alligator
skin, straight from right about where the Miami Dolphins play now. 
They advertised by sending out these postcards all over the east coast. 
We believe they operated from about 1925 until around 1948.
Florida Trunk Mfg Co
Hartmann Trunk CompanyHartmann HistoryHartmann TrunksHartmann Travel Trunks and Bags

A very popular name in trunks, bags, traveling
cases and the like.  Still in business today.  Most of these
ads shown here are from the 1920s.  We’re not experts on Hartmanns. 
The people who really know Hartmann stuff know it inside and out. 
Who are they?  Darned if we know. 

Hartmann is still in business, and you
can visit them online by clicking here
They have an interesting section of the website that describes the company’s
entire history, beginning in 1877.  Click
here to see the history section
of Hartmann’s site.


Old Homer and his folks made wall trunks and
dresser trunks out in Toledo, Ohio.  Dresser trunks open up as shown
in the old ad here.  Drawers slide out, compartments open.  Very
handy.  These trunks are a bit rare.  Started in 1904 or so.
Homer Young Trunk
Indestructo Trunk

Yes, these trunks were very hard to break
or damage.  Of course, they looked awful, but they lasted.  Responding
to a more thrifty America, Indestructo competed with Neverbreak, Nevermar,
Nevercrack, Travel-Well, and a few others to make trunks that had no appeal
but would last forever.  1920s.  Don’t spend too much for these.

My old pal Hank made some wonderful trunks
in his day, which was back in the mid-1800s.  Started around 1840. 
Based in Rochester, NY, Likly trunks were known for their good looks and
functional elements.  They made wardrobe trunks, overnite bags, valises,
standard box trunks, and even some hatboxes.  Look for the original
brass tag, as shown. 

Likly Trunk

Likly Trunk CompanyHenry Likly Trunk
C.A. Malm & Company

Operating in San Francisco starting back in
1868 – still in business today as Malm Luggage.  Visit them by clicking
C A Malm TrunkCA Malm & Co Trunk
Marshall Field Trunks

Before they were known for their department
stores, Marshall Field made a lot of trunks.  Mostly all standard
box trunks, a little short in snappy features, but they worked and lasted
well.  Covered trays were standard issue.  Started late 1800s,
made trunks up until the 1940s, as near as we can tell.

Secor made the Champion Wall Trunk, which
was a good seller for the company, along with many other styles. 
Probably responsible for the manufacture of millions of trunks.  Based
in Racine, Wisconsin.  Started business in 1862, patented wall trunks
in 1894, 1895, and 1897.  Many of his wall trunks had a ‘hip-roof’
style, like the barns you’d see if you were out there in Wisconsin. 
Maybe he was inspired.

Matej Zika (1843-1911) of
Strakonice, Bohemia learned harness making trade. After settling in Racine,
WI, he opened a shop there. In 1862 he commenced manufacturing trunks and
his business grew into immense trunk factories under the name M. M. Secor
Trunk Co., the oldest manufacturer of trunks and traveling bags in the

Secor TrunksMM Secor Trunk Co
Nathan Neat trunkNathan neat Trunk Co

Smack in the middle of Boston there was
a two-block area where trunks were being made by several different shops
– it was a heated competition.  Neat competed with Burr and many others,
vying for market share.  Most of Nate’s trunks were black – achieved
with a thick, soupy aniline dye.  He had high employee turn-over. 
Started business, as near as we’ve been able to tell, around 1822. 
We think he closed up in 1847 or so.

Two factories, one in Madison, the other in
Oshkosh, Wisconsin.  Started business in 1912, and stuck it out for
many years.  They made suitcases, wardrobes, and smaller bags. 
Built to last, and very attractive.  If you find one of these it’s
usually in very good condition. 

OshKosh Trunk History
OshKosh Trunk Co

OshKosh Trunk CoOshKosh Trunks
P&S Trunk Company

P&S had this unique yellow lithograph
inside each of their trunks.  It says “Trunks that Wear Everywhere”
and their trunks usually are showing some wear just about everywhere, but
we don’t think they meant it that way.  Late 1800s to early 1900s.
ED Reynolds Trunk
E. D. Reynolds Trunk
& Bag

From Fremont Street right in downtown
Portland, Maine, operating from about 1800 until who knows when. 
This label was a bit garish, wouldn’t you say?  If you’ve seen the
picture on our home page (the trunk
with the pumpkins
behind it), that trunk was a Reynolds.

Trunks, bags, valises, military and fire caps,
belts, etc.  Boston-based, operating in the mid 1800s.  Roulstone
took over as successor to Robert Burr on Tremont Street in Boston.
Roulstone Trunks
Seward Trunk & Bag
Seward Trunks


Claiming to be the largest baggage co. in
the world, Seward was based in Petersburg, VA.  Postcard shows the
factory.  Price list above from 1904 shows trunk prices averaging
around $2.00.  Middle-class trunks, nothing too elaborate.  Still
in business today; their footlockers may be purchased at large stores such
as WalMart and others. 

Producing highly expensive bags, purses, and
traveling cases (including trunks) from Paris and London, old Louie really
made a name for himself.  These are sort of the big money trunks in
this game.  Some are worth tens of thousands of $, and even some very
beat up Vuittons sell for around $1,000.  There are many experts on
Vuittons, but we are not one of them.  We learn a little more every
time one of them shows up in the shop.  Vuitton is still in business;
have a website
that provides some history of the company.

Louis Vuitton trunk history

Vuitton trunksVuitton trunks for saleVuitton trunk history

Producers of fine wardrobe trunks and smaller
bags that looked like trunk/suitcase hybrids.  1930s.
Wheary TrunksWheary trunk history

The Trunk with Drawers

Winship was one of the very first makers
of wardrobe trunks here in the US, according to their ads.  They made
their first wardrobe trunks around 1884.  With locations in Boston
and then later in Utica, New York, they also made specialty cases for musical
instruments, surveying equipment, and other needs. 


Our complete
contains over 400 trunk makers – Holy Moly!


Our complete
contains over 400 trunk makers – Holy Moly!