Antique Virginia City Masonic Trunk for a Comstock Miner #77854

Currency:USD Category:Collectibles / Furniture, Appliances & Fans Start Price:200.00 USD Estimated At:400.00 - 1,200.00 USD
Antique Virginia City Masonic Trunk for a Comstock Miner   #77854
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Wood and canvas trunk with leather handle and edged with black metal bands, approx. 18" x 11" x 12.5". It is inscribed on the left side with a printed sword, spear, and shield design bearing the manufacturer's name, "M.C. Pettibone Manufacturing Co. Uniforms," and the hand-lettered owner's name, "W.E. Owens, Virginia City, Nev." Pettibone was a maker of costumes and regalia for fraternal organizations. William E. Owens was born about 1848 in Wales and came to Virginia City with his brother Owen at some point in the 1870s. They are not listed in the 1868 or 1873 Virginia City directories. They worked as miners. William died October 4th, 1895 from a heart condition. His brother Owen had died the year before. Both are buried in the same plot in the Silver Terrace cemetery in Virginia City. According to Sacramento Daily Union (October 13, 1879), Owen Owens was injured in a mine accident at the Julia Mine: "By an unexpected lowering of the slide in the Julia mine today, on which a air-pipe was being taken into the mine, Abe Geary had his thigh badly crushed and John Peters and Owen Owens were thrown into the hot water and scalded about their legs. They will probably all recover." According to Sept. 9, 1885 Virginia Evening Chronicle, W.E. Owens was one of the Virginia & Truckee Railroad departures for that day (along with noted jeweler M.M. Fredrick), and may have carried his Masonic regalia in this very trunk on that journey! Trunk does show some signs of use (scuffs, stains). A great Nevada piece! State: Nevada City: Virginia City Date: c1890's