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Hobbs & Co Document Tin


A beautifully proportioned early Victorian document tin with hinged brass carrying handle and lock made by Hobbs & Co, Cheapside, London. The original black painted finish has an ox-blood coloured linear border on each side, and the interior has a removable twin-handled tray in its original cream painted finish. The tin once held important wills, papers and effects, and was recently unearthed from the vaults of a vacated Clerkenwell Victorian solicitors' offices. The brass handle is moulded with "Hobbs & Co Cheapside London" and the lock "Hobb & Co" by appointment with royal crest.


Alfred Charles Hobbs (1812 – 1891) was born in Boston, America. In 1840 he became a salesman for one of the USA’s foremost lock manufacturers, Jones & Newell. He travelled to London for the 1851 Great Exhibition and caused a storm when he managed to pick both a Bramah lock and also the famous Chubb detector lock. As a result of his newfound fame, he formed a very successful company in Cheapside, London which used advanced machine production methods to manufacture all manner of secure locks and tins, such as this wonderful document tin we offer here.

Country of origin: UK

Date of manufacture: c.1855

Material: tin

Dimensions: Length 41cm  Depth 30cm  Height 17cm

Dimensions of tray: Length 39cm  Depth 26.5cm Height 4cm

Condition: our document tin has seen a good 120 years or so of use, and it bears the scars of its solicitous duties and toil, as shown in the images.