I have been providing professional antique trunk appraisals for many years, but now with even more research materials available from my research including antique trunk catalogs in my collection, hundreds of patent documents, early ads, labels, etc., I am able to expand upon this service. I provide very thorough appraisal documents which will give you the current market value of your trunk as well as more detailed historical information about your trunk's age, patented hardware if applicable, trunk maker history, and other related information when available. I will also provide recommendations regarding restoration, cleaning, or preservation of your trunk. Customers have found the appraisals and information very useful and interesting. I believe it's very reasonable for a cost of only $28 as I have spent hundreds of hours researching trunk history and patents, and monitor trunk sales and values weekly to stay current on the values of all American and European trunks, including Louis Vuitton, Goyard, Moynat, Madler, and others.
NOTE: If I see that your trunk is not worth at least 5 times the appraisal fee, I will refund your payment, so you won't have the risk of investing more than you should in your trunk. (This service is not in order to increase my restoration work, as I am currently not taking new restoration projects due to a large backlog.) Please do not call in order to ask me what your trunk is worth because I cannot tell you without seeing pictures, and I get many phone calls and dozens of emails each week. I will continue to help answer some questions about your trunk by email, but there is a fee for an appraisal and written historical information.
An appraisal can be useful or necessary for insurance purposes or for a loss claim. It can also be useful before you sell that trunk in the attic to make sure you aren't about to sell a $1500 trunk in your yard sale for $25. It can even be helpful to settle that ongoing argument with your spouse who wants to drag your trunk to the rummage sale. Or maybe you're one of those Road Show or American Pickers followers and want to see how close you can guess the appraised value. Maybe you want to see if that flea market vendor told you the truth about your trunk. (One lady was told her trunk was made in 1680 and came over on the Mayflower, when in fact it had parts patented on March 16, 1880... a true story!) Whatever your reason, you've come to the right place.
There are many styles and types of antique trunks and values range from under $100 to over $20,000. As with other types of antiques, many factors influence the value including style, age, rarity, condition, completeness, size, and materials. Sorry, but "sentimental value" is not part of an appraisal but can be figured in yourself. The maker can also influence the value, but that is not typically the case with American made trunks. Most people are not aware that there were hundreds of trunk companies in the U.S. during the late 1800's into the early 1900's and most made a large variety of trunk styles. Also, lock companies such as Eagle Lock Co. did not make trunks. I have restored, collected, and studied antique trunks for forty years. Most antique dealers or appraisers have a broad, general knowledge of antiques and specialize in a few items. I specialize in trunks and so have much more specific and documented information related to trunks. Most appraisers also charge quite a bit more for a professional appraisal document. One other trunk restorer now has a $100 fee posted on their web site and another has decided not to even offer the service due to the time involved. So, if you are interested in obtaining an appraisal and history document, here is the process.
To Order an Antique Trunk Appraisal with History Information:
1. Pay the $28 fee either by check, money order, or online through PayPal with the checkout through my web site.
2. Email me the following information: Clear pictures of your trunk showing each side and the interior. Provide close up pictures of any unusual hardware, lock, label, etc. which may be interesting. Usually about 5 or 6 pictures is enough, but more is great if you want to send them. Provide the trunk measurements in inches. If there is a serial number on the trunk or lock, please provide that. If there is more information needed, I will let you know. If you have family history information, please provide that if you would like.
Email your pictures to Marvin@ThisOldTrunk.com
3. You will receive a professional appraisal document by email within 1 to 4 days depending on day of the week, research time needed, etc. You will also receive with the appraisal email copies of patent documents, antique trunk catalog information, or other historical documents related to your trunk.
This product was added to our catalog on Saturday 28 April, 2012.