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We recently got the wife’s grandfather’s old steamer trunk. It is a metal trunk with a tray that served as storage for what we now term as personal effects. It has an old lock that’s now corrodedThe trunk has a lot of history associated with it. The original owner was probably among the first Overseas Foreign Workers (OFWs) after the Second World War. He worked in Guam for many years, establishing himself as an air-conditioning technician at a time when air-conditioning was not a household appliance. It was a skill he would later pass on to his sons, my uncles-in-law, who would put up their own air-conditioning shops.

2013-12-28 11.30.05Grandfather’s old steamer trunk is made of steel and what looks to me like aluminum.

2013-12-28 11.30.57There’s a plate bearing his name and the town and province he was from. Note the reference to the Philippines at the time as P.I. – Philippine Islands. This was a term used by the U.S. even after we gained independence after the war and became a republic.

Trunks were the luggage of yester-years. Old or period movies often show such trunks and other types of luggage in the old days when galleons, steam ships, locomotive-driven trains and carriages were the vehicles for long distance travel. These were heavy even without anything in them so those who could afford to, likely had porters to carry these containers. Nowadays, with baggage weight limits and faster travel with aircraft, lightweight luggage is the way to go especially when one plans to go on some shopping while away. Still, these steamer trunks are part of travel history and shows how far we’ve advanced in the way we travel.