Breaking the Bank for Fun and No Profit

It’s been almost eighteen months since we moved into our retirement home, and “we” still have about a dozen boxes in the garage that haven’t been unpacked. And by “we” I mean MLB.

The boxes contain items that were in her parents’ possession and are difficult to dispose of, for understandable sentimental reasons. Many of those items date back to when she and her sister were very young. The term “antique” doesn’t quite apply, but “vintage” certainly does. 

She’s now slowly and methodically going through some of those boxes, and is uncovering some interesting stuff: baby clothes, crocheted handwork, recipes, children’s books, etc. Among those items was this:

Photo - Piggy bank shaped like a book

Decades before there was such a thing 529 college savings plans, this was apparently the way parents ensured that their children would be financially prepared. It’s a piggy (storky?) bank shaped like a book. And this one had contents that made an intriguing jangling sound when shaken.

It was also very secure.

Photo - Piggy bank lock

Judging by the scratches around the lock, someone had made multiple efforts to abscond with the contents of this mini-safe, but without success. (Or, perhaps, it was just old and scratched up. I prefer the more exciting possibility.)

I have scores of old keys, large and small, without an inkling of what they open, and I was sure that one of them could spring this mechanism. As it turns out, I’m a lousy lock picker, because I couldn’t budge it. However, there’s more than one way to skin a safe:

Photo - Using a Dremel tool to crack open the bank

My trusty Dremel tool made short work of the locked door hinge (after acquiring MLB’s permission, of course), and it was with great anticipation that I pried the little door open. What would we find? Real silver dollars? Truly antique coins? Gold doubloons? The key to Jimmy Hoffa’s coffin?


Photo - No one's going to college on these contents

Unless that smooth stone is actually an uncut diamond and those safety pins were originally on Noah’s ark, MLB’s parents apparently weren’t too serious about sending their kids to college.

I’ll admit to being a little disappointed. But on the upside, any day where you get to use a Dremel tool to break into something is a good day.

Categorized as History