This fun figural traveling inkwell was made during the late 1800s or very early 1900s. It is made to look like a milk churn. We believe it is made of nickel plated brass; some of the plating has worn away to show the brass beneath. The lid opens when the button in front is pressed. For added protection, another lid is inside, which is opened by pressing a latch on the side. This lid has a leather “plug” in the middle which fits tightly onto the glass ink bottle top when the lid is closed. There are no marks on this piece.
SIZE: This inkwell is about 3 1/2” tall and has a diameter of 1 3/4” at the base.
CONDITION: The metal around the bottom is somewhat dinged, as the metal is fairly thin. The base is also dinged up although that is not visible when the inkwell is standing. We do not see any cracks in the metal or other dents besides the bottom. As noted, the plating is wearing off in places. The opening and closing mechanism for both lids is strong and tight. The hinge is in good condition. The ink bottle is also in excellent condition, with no chips or cracks. There is a small wooden disk that the ink bottle sits on. It has been glued in the past, but we have left it loose under the glass bottle.
Figural travelers are wonderful additions to an inkwell collection, and are not so easy to find. We have not seen another one like this.