Matchsafes are pocket size containers used to hold matches to keep them dry and available for a quick light for tobacco or a quick start for a fire. What is most fascinating to me about matchsafe collecting is the thousands of different choices one can find, yet all for the same purpose. They were made of many materials, but mostly metals. They came in all shapes and sizes to fit in a pocket or vest. In the days when smoking was as common as eating advertisers used matchsafes to help sell their products and services. The matchsafe pictured dates back to the early 1900's. It was made of brass by Japanese metalsmiths. It has a hinged top for easy access and safety. The beetle is a common theme in Japanese culture. I'll post more examples in the days ahead.