What is a Vesta Case?


Vesta cases, also known as match safes, are small boxes that are used to carry matches and keep them safe from the elements.  Vesta cases are often intricately crafted and considered small works of art, which why these match cases are very popular with collectors of antiques.

In the early 1800's, it was common to carry matches, since some type of portable fire was needed to light lanterns and stoves.  The matches of that day were crude compared to today's standards, and were known to light when making contact with each other, and sometimes even spontaneously.  In order to alleviate this potentially hazardous situation, it made good sense to utilize a vesta case or match safe.

One of the more interesting features of the vesta case or match safes is that they almost always include some type of rough or ribbed surface, usually on the bottom of the case that is used for striking the matches.

Match safes, or vesta cases can been found in countless different styles, materials and shapes.  Metals used for making vesta cases range from tin, brass and silver to the more expensive precious metals like gold.  Vesta cases can also be found in natural materials including bone, wood and ivory.  While the most common size of the vesta case is small enough to fit comfortably in a pocket, larger cases were also made for home use.  These larger cases or safes were commonly placed in areas where fires were often lit, for example, near wood burning stoves or fireplaces.

Vesta cases can still be found and purchased today for either personal use or to include in a collection.  For a visual example of vesta cases, here is a small sampling of some of the vesta cases and match safes that can be found eBay, an online auction website:

Choose your country:
Change Sort Order:
Rare Solid Silver Enamel Vesta Case Match Safe Holder Striker Rare Solid Silver Enamel Vesta Case Match Safe Holder Striker $16.30
Rare Antique Novelty 1886 Silver Vesta Case Enamelled Punch Magazine Cover Rare Antique Novelty 1886 Silver Vesta Case Enamelled Punch Magazine Cover $703.19
RARE Tiffany Studios Abalone Match Safe NR TSNY Gold Matchbox Desk Set RARE Tiffany Studios Abalone Match Safe NR TSNY Gold Matchbox Desk Set $380.00
Rare Design Antique Victorian Solid Silver Sampson Mordan Vesta Case 1886 Rare Design Antique Victorian Solid Silver Sampson Mordan Vesta Case 1886 $176.17
Solid Silver Masonic Engraved Vesta Case Birmingham 1918 Very Rare Solid Silver Masonic Engraved Vesta Case Birmingham 1918 Very Rare $76.98
RARE SILVER PLATE BUNNY RABBIT VESTA CASE RARE SILVER PLATE BUNNY RABBIT VESTA CASE $95.00
Rare Antique Edwardian George Unite Sterling Silver Vesta Case Birmingham 1901 Rare Antique Edwardian George Unite Sterling Silver Vesta Case Birmingham 1901 $33.74
Very Rare Early Vintage 1921 Purol Gasoline Tiolene Motor oil match safe holder Very Rare Early Vintage 1921 Purol Gasoline Tiolene Motor oil match safe holder $95.00
PRINCE ALBERT VERTICAL POCKET TOBACCO TIN SALESMAN SAMPLE OR MATCH SAFE RARE PRINCE ALBERT VERTICAL POCKET TOBACCO TIN SALESMAN SAMPLE OR MATCH SAFE RARE $16.00
VESTA CASE DUNHILL BRASS AND FAUX SHELL ANTIQUE RARE YOU KNOW YOU WANT IT VESTA CASE DUNHILL BRASS AND FAUX SHELL ANTIQUE RARE YOU KNOW YOU WANT IT $7.68

« Previous12345...910

Tags: , , ,

Related pages

Copyright © 2007–2015 Vesta Case · All Rights Reserved — SitemapRevolution Lifestyle theme by Brian Gardner