These vintage mini Lane cedar chests are very popular. I really couldn't figure out why so I did some investigating and this is what I found out.
History on Lane Furniture -
Edward Hudson Lane (1891-1973) founded the company in Altavista, Campbell County, Virginia. After struggling through the first few years of its existence, Lane's fortunes received a boost during World War I, when the company contracted with the federal government to produce pine
ammunition boxes. To meet wartime demands, Lane introduced an efficient assembly system at its factory. When the plant reconverted to the peacetime production of cedar chests, workers and management were able to adopt some of the mass production methods they had learned during the war emergency. Reaching new heights of production and prosperity in the 1920s, Lane began to advertise its products nationally. These advertisements sought to equate the ideal of domesticity with a Lane "Hope
Chest," in which a young woman stored clothing or home furnishings in anticipation of marriage. This was summed up in the company's tag line: "The gift that starts the home."
If you purchased a Lane cedar chest from a furniture store you were given one of these small Lane cedar chests as a gift from the furniture store and Lane.
Lane advertisements reached a high point during World War II, persuading thousands of GIs leaving for overseas to purchase a Lane
Hope Chest for the sweethearts they were leaving behind. Ads combined romantic images of men in uniform and their fiancees with patriotic slogans and the well-know face of national spokeswoman, and symbol of all things American, Shirley Temple.
In the 1950s Lane added a number of new product lines to its repertoire, including television cabinets manufactured for General Electric and occasional tables. These were followed in the 1960s and 1970s by new lines of bedroom furniture and
Unfortunately, Lane Furniture underwent a hostile takeover by Interco Corporation in 1987 and the plant eventually closed in 2001.
Also, from the 1930's through the 1950's, high school graduates would be given a mini Lane cedar chest by a business in their community. I hear of this more often in small towns but I guess that it could also have occured in larger cities.
These mini Lane cedar chests were used to store love letters from the GI's away at war, trinkets
from childbirth and other small but very important items. While the large Lane cedar chest held family quilts and keepsake clothing.
That is why these little cedar chests hold such memories for so many people. They remember seeing treasures in them and other trinkets that were very dear to loved ones.
I am always on the lookout for more vintage mini Lane cedar chests so if I don't have any in stock at the moment please check back, I'm sure I will have more soon.