The use of metal for cigar boxes and cans was legalized in 1870. So far, I’ve only found tin boxes from the 1800’s, no tin cans or novelties. Tin cans become popular in the early 20th century, not long after companies began experimentation with aluminum cigar boxes and cans. Complex sturdy metal boxes are thought of as creatures of the depression era; all those that can be positively dated were patented in the mid to late 1920’s and used in the 1930’s. To get an idea of the full range of metal boxes used for cigars, visit both the Tin Boxes 1900 - 1960 exhibit and the 1930’s Novelties exhibits.

Metal Cigar Boxes

A National Cigar History Museum Exhibit

© Tony Hyman

Addition:  June 12, 2011

Addition:  July 11, 2011