This is an absolutely incredible old New England wooden sugar bucket (or firkin). From its appearance and primitive construction, we believe it dates from the earlier 1800s. It is in superb condition, solid and heavy. Apparently it was made for storage, because it has no handle.
This bucket is tight and sound - amazing, because it has interlocking fingers instead of nails securing the overlapping lap bands! We found TWO (only two!) nails, see our pictures, and they are SQUARE nails, securing the band around the lid.
We cleaned this but have done nothing else to it. The bare wood that shows out from under what is left of a thick coat of old greenish-gray paint is natural and unfinished. This appears to be old milk paint (not oil) and there is flaking all over. There is no "alligatoring."
SIZE is approximately 12 inches total height (10 inches inside); 11 inches across the top and 13 inches across the bottom. The side stave boards are a full 1/2 inch thick.
The craftsmanship in this bucket is amazing - we've never seen one made with lap bands that were not nailed! but it is secure and tight, actually more than some of the nailed ones we have come across.
IMPORTANT: SEE OUR PICTURES, the rim band is split partway around the middle, so it must be handled carefully. The lid fits well. As long as you handle it carefully the split makes no difference - we do not repair pieces like this, we prefer leaving pieces as found and not doing anything that might affect value.
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Unusual 2-Nail Antique Wooden Firkin Sugar Bucket w Overlapping Fingers in Old Gray Paint