This is an absolutely terrific, working lock set from the Boston & Maine Railroad. Both lock and key have the final switch cut the B&M used. Surprisingly, the newer keys like this are among the very hardest t find!
THE KEY is superb, a wonderful strong golden with great patina. It is stamped B&M in block letters on one side of its bow. On the other side is stamped serial number 4092 and the maker name ADLAKE. Condition is extremely nice with "just enough" wear to document use and authenticity.
THE LOCK is a Keline hardened steel model from Elkhart, Indiana. It is Keline's attractive angular shape, with the name in raised letters down the dust cover. The internal spring is extremely strong. The dust cover resists being pushed aside to admit the key and then snaps sharply back over the keyhole when released. It appears to be very clean inside, and responds 100% to the key. On the back the lock is stamped B&M to match the key.
This set belongs with a good New England collection, especially one including B&M relics. It is a fine example of the last locks and keys that were used.
BACKGROUND PER WIKIPEDIA: The Boston & Maine Railroad was a U.S. Class I railroad that operated in the states of Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire and into New York. It was chartered in New Hampshire on June 27, 1835 and grew over the years to operating throughout much of New England. As it expanded it gained control of numerous former rival roads including the Eastern Railroad, Worcester & Nashua, the Boston & Lowell, the Connecticut River, the Eastern Railroad, the Concord & Montreal and the Fitchburg. The B&M flourished with the growth of New England's mill towns in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, but still faced financial struggles. It came under the control of J. P. Morgan and his New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad around 1910, but anti-trust forces wrested control back. Later it faced heavy debt problems from track construction and from the cost of acquiring the Fitchburg Railroad, causing a reorganization in 1919.
The B&M filed for bankruptcy in December 1970, during which it reorganized, struggling through the 1970s, finally emerging from bankruptcy in 1983. It then was purchased by Timothy Mellon's Guilford Transportation Industries for $24 million, marking the beginning of the end. Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Technically, Boston & Maine Corporation still exists today but only as a non-operating ward of PAR. Vermont It became part of what is now the Pan Am Railways network in 1983.
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