New Keen Kutter padlockBy Mark Chervenka
New Keen Kutter padlock
Reproduction Keen Kutter brass padlocks have been found around the country and on Internet auction sites. Originals sell for $90-$125. The new sample shown below was purchased for $10 at a Western collectibles show and sale.
New padlocks are entirely brass including the shackle. Shackles on originals are steel for strength. New locks are manufactured with obvious big brass rivets that pass through both front and back. No originals of this style have exposed rivet heads on the front.
The padlocks are a figural representation of the Keene Kutter trademark which is a pie shaped wedge over a rectangular block. "Keen Kutter" appears in slanted lettering with "E.C. Simmons" spelled out in a curved line at the top.
The Keen Kutter brand was developed by the Simmons Hardware Company of St. Louis, Missouri. The brand dates back to 1870 when it was first used on tools and cutlery. Eventually the brand was expanded to include household items such as meat grinders, sewing machines, lawn mowers and general hardware.