Rabbit Boxes

Do you know what a rabbit box is? It is a crude rabbit trap. I had a couple as I grew up. They were easy to construct and I made my own.

The box, with some food at the back part of it, would be placed where rabbits would probably run. The food caused the rabbit to go to the back of the box and hit a trigger which let a slide door fall capturing him.
It was great fun to check on your boxes. You could tell from a distance if the door was shut and you’d caught something. I never kept a rabbit because I didn’t like the thought of killing it and dressing it to eat. Besides, I couldn’t bear the thought of eating one. This kind of trap didn’t hurt the animal and I considered it a humane sport.

My grandmother however didn’t consider trapping rabbits a sport. She had about 25 boxes. She checked these boxes every day and would bring the rabbits she had caught home where she kept them in a cage until the peddler came.

The peddler was a man who traveled from farm to farm buying, selling, and trading merchandise gathered as he went along. He paid my grandmother 50¢ per rabbit. She usually had five or six to sell. Three dollars was a good extra income at that time. She usually also had eggs and butter to trade, but rabbits were her best commodity.