Types of Vintage Tobacco Tins

Written by melissa busse
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Types of Vintage Tobacco Tins
Many people collect tobacco-related items. (Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images)

Although they were at one time considered everyday objects, many types of vintage items are now considered collectable. Old tobacco tins, for example, are now highly collectable items. Collectors of vintage tobacco tins often take pride in the stories and histories behind their prized collections. Some types of collectable vintage tobacco tins include cigar tins, cigarette tins and chewing tobacco tins.

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Cigar Tins

Vintage cigar tins come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are items valued by collectors. Vintage tins that are shaped similarly to the modern cigar box were designed to keep the cigars flat and lying on their sides. Some of these cigar box-style tins feature hinged lids, while others have lids that can be completely removed. Tall, round cigar tins were once used to store cigars in an upright fashion, rather than on their sides. According to vintageportal.com, some people continue to store their cigars in vintage tins, claiming that they still efficiently keep their cigars fresh. The value of vintage cigar tins vary greatly. Older, larger or more intricate tins tend to sell for the highest amount.

Cigarette Tins

In the 1920s through the 1930s, smokers preferred to store their cigarettes in special cigarette tins. These vintage tins are small and flat, with a length not much longer than that of the cigarettes they held. Most tins held 50 cigarettes, hence the nickname "flat fifties." These cigarette tins hinge in the middle and held one row of 25 cigarettes on each side of the hinge. The cigarettes were held in place on the inside of the tins with springs or elastic straps. Because vintage cigarette tins are highly collectable items, some smokers continue to use them to store their own cigarettes.

Chewing Tobacco Tins

Vintage chewing tobacco tins are usually made of brass; however, some were manufactured from copper, silver or aluminium. These tobacco tins are generally quite small and oval-shaped. Often, the date that the tin was made is stamped onto the metal of the tin, as well as the name and address of its previous owner. Miners often took these tins of chewing tobacco into the mines with them and chewed the contents while they worked. According to mining-memorabilia.co.uk, this practice increased the miners' saliva levels, which helped them clean their mouths of dust.

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