This is one of my very favorite boxes I've had in my possession; it's just loaded with character and warmth. The dealer I purchased it from referred to it as an onion box, which would make sense if the onions were the size of shallots... Or perhaps it was used for storing tobacco? I do think it would be quite useful now for storing garlic, or perhaps filling with peppercorns to scoop out as needed, and would be great either sitting on the counter or mounted on the wall (there is an old brass bracket attached at some point with one screw to the back for just this purpose). Just a really sweet piece.
The lid attaches via wire loops that fit over wire hooks on the back, and comes off entirely, making it easy to get at whatever is stored inside, while a latch on the front keeps it snugly closed. The four sides and bottom are joined by nails at the corners, and there are eight very tiny holes forming a pattern on the front, but which do not seem to go all the way through the wood, so I'm assuming they just decorative.
4" tall x 4" wide x 2 7/8" deep. Very good overall antique condition, with a really nice warm patina. The wood is worn thinner on the front where the latch closes, evidencing its age and enhancing its character. There is one round hole in the lid and two in the bottom (only one that goes all the way through the wood and smaller than a peppercorn!)