Wednesday, April 27, 2011

The Original Miner's Lunchboxes

This Canadian Design Icon was built out of the need for an "on the job" lunch seat for nickel miners in Sudbury, Ontario. Mr. Leo May constructed these aluminum riveted lunchbox in 1957 by hand after his tin lunch box gave way while riding the elevator up from the mining shaft. In 1978 L. May Metal Fabricators Ltd. was started and one of a kind automated machines were created. These beautifully crafted lunchboxes are common place in mining towns all over Canada. I first saw them while in Calgary two years ago, working with a former miner who stated that his was 20 years old. He had the union stickers on the lunchbox to prove it!. I found a similar lunchbox being constructed in Orangeville, Ont. a metal maker who made them for Aladdin back in the day and bought one of those. Then while walking in a local thrift store found my current L. May lunchbox for $3. The L. May is far more heavy duty then the Aladdin versions with latches that are 100 x better. You can order them online through L. May Metal Fabricators website. They might be "more expensive" then a cloth lunch bag, but if you divide $45 over 30 years thats $1.50 a year. If you shoot them a email, they might have some seconds for discounted prices?. Hopefully you bring your lunch to work like me, you can rest assured that you will never need to buy another box again, neither will your grand kids.

1 comment:

  1. love these miner's lunchboxes, so glad to see them admired here, great post!