Saturday, April 09, 2011
RANDOM 341 OBJECT
RARE Antique TRICK OPEN Pocket MATCH SAFE Admiral DEWEY-$239
I fiddled around with this beautiful old vesta case / match safe for about an hour, and just before I decided the “trick” might be to throw it against the wall, I accidentally discovered how it opens.
It measures 2 ¾” by 1 ½” by ½” thick. The condition is excellent with only the most minor wearing of the nickel plated brass – and I DO mean minor.
The bold, crisp, embossed design, both front and back, shows no signs of it being carried around in someone’s pocket. (Maybe they couldn’t figger out how to open it. Well . . . I guess they did because inside you can see signs of actual use.)
It dates to around 1895-1899 according to what little I’ve found out about it. The cruel designer put hinges on both sides, and he even put little “thumbnail notches” on the knobs at the ends of both “hinges.”
Turns out all you have to do is mash in on one section of one of the “hinges” (at my arrow), and it pops open with enthusiastic gusto.
Wonderful piece of work. It would make the ideal gift for someone interested in Dewey (December 26, 1837 – January 16, 1917), the hero of Manila; Spanish American War items; Vesta Cases /Pocket Match safes; Trick open boxes; or just lovely old things in general.
Inside you’ll not only find a “pouch” for holding the matches; you’ll also find both types of striking surfaces. See my arrows.
The “paper” striking surface isn’t glued in because it was made to replace from time to time. It is held in place by little tabs, but I decided not to mess with it.
RANDOM ENCYCLOPEDIA BRITANNICA
ERLAU(hungarian-eger, slavonic-jager, + latin-agria)- fortified town of hungary. previous to 1803, erlau was the see of a bishopric, founded by st. stephan, king of hungary in the 1th c. in 1804 elevated to an arch-bishopric. wineries. red wines! old walls + 6 gates. observatory. cathdral, blah blah founded by king stephan of hungary who lived there in 1010. turks, turkish fortress. in 1552 resisted repeated assaults by the turks. in 1596, austria gave it up. during revolution in 1848-49 erlau had remarkable patriotic spirit. pop at 1870 was 19,150.
wiki uses eger