How to Buy an Antique Cigarette Case on eBay

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How to Buy an Antique Cigarette Case on eBay

For collectors and smoking aficionados alike, eBay has made it easier then ever purchase their very own antique cigarette case online. However, it is still extremely important for any potential buyer to gain a richer understand in the world of antique cigarette cases. The make the most informed decision, a buyer needs to have as much information as possible, and this guide helps to provide an overview of what is needed. It is always important to examine the history of these pieces to gain a full understanding of how these cases became so popular. Considering the many advantages and materials used in cigarette cases will also help determine the best choice for any potential buyer. For those hoping to use their cigarette cases, it is also wise to learn the proper care techniques for the various materials a case may be made of. Finally understanding the history of some of the most famous cigarette case produces may help a potential buyer find unique bargains and hidden gems. With the completion of this guide the reader should feel more confident in using eBay’s to find exactly what they need.

History of Antique Cigarette Cases

During the nineteenth and twentieth century tobacco became a cheap and popular product in both Britain and the United States, which led to the production of the cigarette case. Cigarette cases were most popular in America during the early part of the twenty-first century when they were seen as a symbol of status and wealth. Another important development was the invention of the ‘strike anywhere’ match in the late nineteenth century, which made smoking tobacco products on the go a much easier task. This boost in popularity led the creation of cigarette cases, which were ideal for protecting cigarettes from both the elements and being damaged by other heavy items. The most popular material used for cigarette cases was silver; this was due to the boom in silver production that swept England and the United States in the eighteenth century. This trend lasted until the Second World War, and cigarette cases were made from a variety of materials during that time. As smoking culture spread to the lower classes the cigarette case became popular in all walks of life, which explains the large variety of antique cases that can be found to this day. Antique cigarette cases continue to be both popular collectable items and decorative functional pieces, and can be easily found online through eBay.

Discover Antique Cigarette Cases

Unlike the plastic boxes that cigarettes come in today, the most robust antique cigarette case can keep cigarettes feeling fresh and protected at all times.  Many of these antique cases were also handmade and were built to of a very high quality, intended to last for generations. With a range in materials and styles, designed to suit original buyers from all classes, there are a range of antique cases available today.

Materials Used for Antique Cigarette Cases

When you are looking for an antique cigarette case online it is important to consider the material used in its construction. Each material comes with its own advantages and associated value. Some of the most popular materials are listed below.





The most valuable metal used in antique cigarette cases.

· Extremely valuable and durable.


Simple carved wood.

· The best preservative for tobacco products.


A glass like material with unique texture.

· Easily sculpted into wonderful shapes.

Copper or Brass

Unspectacular but solid metals.

· The cheapest and most durable materials.


Leather became extremely popular for its durability but can be found sparingly among true antique cases

· Much more modern and extremely durable.

Factors to Consider When Buying Antique Cigarette Cases

Before purchasing an antique cigarette case there are a few important factors that should be considered. These factors are important when looking for the right case and can vary depending on the material of the case.

· The Condition– The condition of an antique case is extremely important in the buying process. Damage to key parts, such as the hinges and insides, could prevent the case for functioning properly. Be sure to carefully inspect any case before purchase, or ask the seller any relevant questions. It is not necessary to always avoid minor damage, as finding a pristine antique piece is rare.

· Material used – The cost of an antique case can change dramatically based on the material used. The classic silver cases that were most popular during the 19th century are worth quite a bit more than a cooper case from the same time.

· Decoration - Certain cases were made with opulent designs and carvings and can be worth lot more than simpler engraved cases. It is important to decide what level of decoration is expected before purchase.

How to Care for Antique Cigarette Cases

How to take the best care of an antique cigarette case depends entirely on the material it is made of.  The most important approach is to always treat any antiques with care and to avoid undue strain on them. For wood products it is best to leave them in a higher humidity environment, while metal prefers a lower humidity. Silver cases need to be washed in warm water to prevent tarnishing while leather cases simply requires cleaning with a damp cloth. If major damage occurs to any case it is important to seek expert help as DIY fixes may cause more harm then good. Antique cigarette cases were made to last hundreds of years and can accomplish that goal so long as they are properly cared for.

Popular Antique Cigarette Case Manufacturers

The most popular manufacturers of cigarette cases were usually famous silversmiths, though many other manufacturers soon began creating cases in other materials. Some popular manufacturers include:

  • Gorham
  • Asprey and Co.
  • Shreve and Co.
  • Edward Bernard and Sons Ltd.
  • Batin
  • Peter Carl Faberge
  • George Scheibler
  • George Stockwell
  • Thomas Daniel
  • William Chawner II
  • Whiting
  • William Eaton
  • Blackington

Accessories and Add-ons for Antique Cigarette Cases

After finding an antique cigarette case on eBay there are a few accessories that can be acquired to help increase the enjoyment of the item. Certain accessories will also help care for and maintain newly purchased antiques. These accessories can be easily found in any number of antique and jewellery shops. A few of these add-ons include:

  • Metal polish
  • Leather polish
  • Polishing cloth
  • Protective case
  • Vesta case

Finding Antique Cigarette Cases on eBay

Once you determine the type of antique cigarette case you want to purchase, visit the Antiques portal on eBay, click on jewellery then start searching item listings. The Categories list on the left-hand side of the eBay page helps to narrow the search.

Searching for Antique Cigarette Caseson eBay

Search eBay listing titles for specific words when shopping for an antique cigarette case. For example, to find antique silver cigarette case, type ‘Antique Silver Cigarette Case’ into the search box, and then click the Advanced button to customise the results. Also visit eBay’s Search Tips page for more advice on searching for antique solid cigarette cases with keywords. If you can’t find the exact antique cigarette case you want, try shopping eBay Stores.


After finishing this guide any potential collector should feel more confident in finding their own antique cigarette case on eBay. Remembering the importance of the history and benefits of the cigarette case, while keeping the many different materials in mind at all times will help make the most informed purchase. It is also imperative to remember the proper care tips and factors that can influence the sale of an antique case. Once you have collected this information, you can buy an antique cigarette case safely and securely on eBay.

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