Collectors’ associations

There are many collectors in the world, but collectors’ associations are found mainly in the UK and the US. Some examples of major, well-established associations are the West Coast Lock Collectors Association (WCLCA), the American Lock Collectors Association, and American Profile in the United States.

Museums with lock collections

The job of museums is to gather, protect, preserve, and show objects. Many museums have started as private collections. Most types of Swedish locks and keys are found in the collections of the county museums, but unfortunately they are rarely exhibited. The Nordic Museum and the Museum of National Antiquities in Stockholm have huge collections of locks and keys, but only a handful are on display.

Several museums in Europe and the United States show locks and keys in their core exhibits. However, many museums frequently change their exhibits; the Internet is a good way to keep track of current exhibitions, admittance fees, and open hours.


Gruuthuse Museum, Bruges, Belgium

Royal Museums of Art and History, Brussels


Ironbridge Gorge Museum, Ironbridge

Museum of English Rural Life, Reading University

Science Museum, London

Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Willenhall Lock Museum – The Locksmith’s House. Willenhall, West Midlands


Borgå Museum, Borgå


Musée des Arts Décoratifs (Museum of Decorative Arts), Paris

Musée de la Serrure (Lock Museum) – Bricard, Paris

Musée le Secq des Tournelles, Rouen

Musée des Arts Décoratifs (Museum of Decorative Arts), Bordeaux


Historical Museum, Oslo


Museum of National Antiquities, Stockholm

Nordic Museum, Stockholm

Kulturen, Lund

Historical Museum in Lund

Gislöfs Smidesmuseum (Gislöf’s Ironworking Museum) in southeastern Skåne


Bavarian National Museum, Munich

Deutsche Schloss- und Beschlägemuseum (German Museum of Locks and Fittings) in Forum Niederberg, Velbert

Germanisches Nationalmuseum (National Germanic Museum), Nuremberg

Historisches Museum (Historical Museum), Dresden

St. Annen Museum, Lubeck

United States

Lock Museum of America, Inc. Terryville, Connecticut. Terryville is the American location where locks were first manufactured on an industrial basis, starting in 1833.


Hanns Schell Collection, Graz

A collection of Roman finger-ring keys of bronze from c. 200 AD.
A collection of Roman finger-ring keys of bronze from c. 200 AD. Photo by the author.