History of Mouse Traps

Virtually all the important history of mouse traps is contained within the publications listed on the publication page of this website. The main purpose of this page is to guide interested readers to those  publications likely to be of most interest to them. The publications themselves will be simply referred to as the numbers on the publication list.
For the general reader the book of most interest will be Publication 26 (P26). This book identifies "the four ages of mouse traps", a very early age in which traps were made of pottery (replicas of such traps are now in the British Museum), a second age in which no traps seem to have survived, a third age extending from mediaeval times to the mid nineteenth century (replicas of many of these traps are now in  the Museum of English Rural Life, MERL), and the modern age, from the 1850s to the present.
The designs of the pottery traps will be discovered in Ps 1,3 and 5. Traps of the third age are described in Ps 16,13 and 32. The history of the modern period is dealt with in relation to those four countries in which most of the development occured. These are the USA (Ps12, 16, 17, 18, 20, 22, 23, 25, 27, 28, 29, 30, 35 and 36) ( examples of many US traps will be found in the Museum of the North Amercan Trap Collectors Association in Galloway, Ohio), Britain (Ps7,10,11,24 and 32) (examples of many British traps will be found in MERL, Reading), Germany (Ps 19,39 and 40) (many German traps can be seen in the Neroth Mouse Trap Museum, Vulkaneifel, Germany) and France (Ps 21,34 and 43).