Abraham O. Stansbury was born on December 9, 1837, in England. When he was just eight years old, his family immigrated to the United States and settled in New York City. As a young man, Stansbury apprenticed as a machinist and eventually opened his own machine shop. In 1862, he invented the Stansbury lock, which was patented in 1863. The Stansbury lock allowed for safes and bank vaults to be opened without the use of a key.
How the Stansbury Lock Works
The Stansbury lock is a unique design that uses a set of rotating disks to open a safe or bank vault. Each disk is numbered from 1 to 9, and each number corresponds to a different letter of the alphabet. To open the lock, you simply rotate the disks to spell out a word or phrase. For example, if the combination is “OPEN,” you would rotate the disks to spell out “6536.”
The beauty of the Stansbury lock is that it can be opened without the use of a key. This made it ideal for safes and bank vaults, which often needed to be opened in an emergency situation. The only downside is that if you forget the combination, there’s no way to open the lock!
If you’ve ever wondered how safes and bank vaults are opened without a key, you can thank Abraham O. Stansbury for that. The English-born inventor came up with the idea for the Stansbury lock in 1862 and patented it the following year. The lock uses a set of rotating disks that are each numbered from 1 to 9. To open the lock, you simply rotate the disks to spell out a word or phrase. While it’s a handy invention, just be sure not to forget the combination—or you’ll be locked out!