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Antique PRRCO Fancy Cast Pennsylvania Railroad Brass Switch Lock & Key Set Stewart & Mattson
This fine fancy castback switch lock from the Pennsylvania Railroad is a scarce one made by Adlake precursor Stewart & Mattson . It works well with the correct, early knobby key made by Fraim that accompanies it.
THE LOCK is solid and heavy and a terrific representative of Stewart & Mattson, a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania foundry and lock maker which was purchased in the early 1900s by the Adams & Westlake Company. It has gorgeous color and a beautiful patina -- rich, deep golden brass. The cast lettering stands out sharply against a darker, lightly pitted background. On the back of the shackle, the maker mark is stamped: S&M MFG CO / PHILA. There is no chain. There are some edge and surface bumps and dings from use over many years. The worst are bumps into the top right shoulder above the PRRCO (SEE OUR PICTURES PLEASE).
IMPORTANT: There is no spring in the drop over the keyhole, although the bar is close to the lock body and stays shut over the keyhole when you push it there. ALSO, although it's not terribly noticeable from the PRRCO side, the point on the clevis tail apparently has been filed off (SEE OUR PICTURE PLEASE). Perhaps an impossibly rusted clevis/clevis pin had to be removed. A replacement could be installed without any difficulty if you wish. LAST, there is just a little bit of green surface tarnish you could remove. We do NOT clean our locks and keys!
THE KEY is the correct knobby style with a straight bit cut. It is stamped PRR on one side and on the other serial number P1343, above the Fraim Company's keystone logo mark. This mark dates it to about the same age as the lock, perhaps just slightly younger.
This very pretty set would look terrific in any good collection of railway padlock and keys.
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