Locksmithing is an ancient field that has only grown more advanced and complex over the years. Anybody who practices it’s true art needs to be both trustworthy and skilled. Here’s some fun facts about locksmiths that you might not know.
Apprentices are Common
Many locksmiths receive on the job training. You need to be an apprentice first in order to become a locksmith. This is both for practical and ethical reasons. The mentor of apprentices make sure that their apprentices are honest and trustworthy,s o they will do justice to the true honor of the profession, and not use their knowledge for evil.
The first professional locksmith was in 1788
Yes, the oldest lock was found in the Khorsabad Palace in Nineveh, and is estimated to be 4000 years in age. However, the first serious locksmith profession was in 1788, when England’s Rover Barron patented his double acting tumbler lock.
Lockpicking Championships Exist
The Open Organisation of Lockpickers offer a championship called the Dutch Open, started in 2008, which is a major event which involves the competitive opening of locks - all without the use of keys, or breaking the locks - tools are provided however.
The magician Harry Houdini was a locksmith
The famous escape artist and magician Harry Houdini was once a professional locksmith. In 1904 Harry Houdini was challenged by a London newspaper to break a special pair of specially manufactured handcuffs which took 5 years to make. Of course, he was able to use his expert knowledge to do so.
A king of France was betrayed by a locksmith
During the French Revolution, the King Louis XVI and his wife Marie Antoinette were given up to the guillotine by Francois Gamain, a locksmith.