Trunk History

This trunk was commonly called a camel back, dome top or steamer trunk. The top on this trunk curves both directions. This design was first made in the early 1800’s in Europe.

The top was designed to prevent other luggage from being stacked atop them when used in traveling by ship to America. Only the most elite people could afford to buy a camel back top trunk. The design was continued in America because when the dome top was covered with tin, it shed water well when traveling by stagecoach.

This particular one is covered in herringbone embossed zinc, accented with scalloped sheet steel trim along the corners. Most of the original trunks were mostly constructed of tin in an effort to make them lightweight for travel. Oak slats were steamed and formed in a mold to fit over the top. Cast iron rollers, flip latches and an ornate brass lock compliment the design. Put together with simple slat covers and clinched trunk nails.