An unusual pair of walnut, brass edged Campaign Cupboards fitted to the interior with multiple dividers.
The 2 parts can sit on each other to form a piece of furniture similar to a campaign chest. They fix together by bolts but the surface of the bottom section is good enough that the cupboards can also be used separately. The cupboards were never fitted with feet and have flush campaign handles to the sides. The baize to the undersides of both sections suggest they were meant to stack on top of each other or another piece of furniture. The locks to the doors are interesting. The right hand doors have just a lock with the key used to pull it open. In doing this, they release a sprung brass catch that holds the left hand door closed. Likewise, when closed, the catch locks the other door. The locks are Patent 6 levers by Leadbeater of 125 Aldersgate St. and provide much stronger security, which perhaps indicates the importance of the Cupboard contents.
John Leadbeater started in business between 1839 and 1846, having previously worked for Chubb. He stayed at the same address throughout his career which ended between 1865 and 1880. Leadbeater also made strong rooms and fire-proof safes and is known to have dealt with the Board of Ordnance. He exhibited at the Great Exhibition. The combined interiors have 30 large pigeon holes and it maybe that it was used by an adjutant or army clerk. Now it could be used for storing a number of items but would work well for shoes.
The rounded brass edging offsets the walnut well and this is a good looking piece of campaign furniture. Circa 1850.