This antique lock set came from a long-time Ohio collector who focused on his home region. The padlock and key work very well together, but we are not positive of their history.
THE BRASS KEY is stamped RTRY, for the River Terminal Railway, a short line switching railroad that was built within the city of Cleveland, Ohio to handle rail traffic at the terminal. The RTRY's purpose was to service the Baltimore & Ohio and the Pennsylvania railroads, which had both built lines into the city. Sharing the RTRY's services meant that both the B&O and PRR enjoyed considerable savings, since neither had to afford the entire cost of an individual operation. There are no other markings on this key. IMPORTANT : Please look at the bit, which may have been filed very slightly to make it work more smoothly in the lock. It definitely is not as old as the lock, but it is indeed earlier 1900s.
The River Terminal started up in 1909 and operated over only a few miles of track. It lasted some 60 years until 1979, when all the shortline companies in the city were merged into a single company called the Cleveland Works Railway Organization.
THE BRASS LOCK is an antique RItchie & Boyden, Newark, New Jersey. A number 18 is their model number, a "railroad quality" superior, heaviest duty padlock manufactured especially for sale to railroads. It has terrific, sharp, clear maker markings and is stamped PATENTED EXT'D AUGUST 23 1867 (The original patent date was 1853). It is a gorgeous rich, deep color. NO dents, splits or cracks. There are overall light surface bumps and dings from use over many years. The clevis is iron and the pin is frozen in place.
PLEASE NOTE: the back (only the back) is covered in old brown paint (SEE PICTURES). There is no paint anywhere else.
An intriguing find and a great addition to any good railroad padlock and key collection !
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