Collecting Biscuit Tins


Text by Linda Wright

Necessity is often credited for being the mother of invention, and in searching the history of the biscuit tin you will find necessity led the way.

English biscuit maker Joseph Huntley had the advantage of owning a shop located across the street from a regular stop of the stagecoach line where passengers were ready customers. Traveling by stagecoach in the 1800s in England was rough enough for people, let alone perishable cargo like biscuits.biscuit-tin-collection-detail

Huntley soon realized the biscuits needed some kind of protective packaging for safe travel, so he began placing them in metal tins. This simple idea led to the formation of two companies: Huntley & Palmer, biscuit company, and Huntley, Bourne, and Stevens, a firm of biscuit tin manufacturers founded by Huntley’s son. With their success, many imitators followed them into the biscuit tin business.