The oldest continuously meeting locksmith association in the world!


Realizing the need for mutual understanding and the survival of the craft of Locksmithing in the State of New Jersey, a group of dedicated locksmiths assembled in Newark, New Jersey, in the twenties. From this assembly was formed The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey, dedicated to the mutual benefits to be derived from a program of cooperation among the lock and safe men. This group petitioned the State of New Jersey for a charter as a nonprofit Business Association in 1939. This charter was granted by the State of New Jersey on June 27, 1939.


Mission Statement

The goal of The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey is threefold. First, work to provide our membership with the education necessary to meet the challenges of the advancing technologies of the physical security industry. Secondly, strive to improve the condition of our industry as a whole. Third, to educate the public of its needs and requirements for the services we provide.


A Brief History

(The following history was written in the early 1990s
 by Connie Maffey, a life member of MLANJ)

A decision was made to put together a brief history of the Association in its first sixty years.  As the membership was small in numbers, all members contributed their time, effort and dedication to make The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey a success.
   The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey is the oldest association having continued monthly meetings every year since it was formed in 1929.
   It became affiliated with the American Master Locksmith Association in 1929, Charles Courtney, President, as New Jersey Local Chapter No. 9.
   In 1931, the members of Chapter No. 9 decided to go on their own and formed the present association.  The same year the National organization disbanded. The remaining 13 chapters ceased to exist, leaving The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey as the only organized locksmith’s association in the country.
   The task of rebuilding and organization came under the leadership of its first President Mr. Robert Bell, Jr.  From this humble beginning and with approximately ten members, the group formed a bond of harmony in the trade, education for its membership, and quality service to our public.
   Even though the country was in the Great Depression the new association was formed and they met on a regular basis.  The main reason was fellowship with the main event of the year a family picnic.  This was usually held in the Watchung Mountains of New Jersey.  It was a full day of fun, food and games.  The families were large with many kids in the 1930’s and the members also invited their families.  With the kids came kid games -- baseball and even a live band.  For the older folks was horse shoes, a nail driving contest and egg races.

Soon others joined and a large part of our members still belong.  It did not take ALOA long to recognize the fact that The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey had many hard working devoted members, and ALOA asked us to co-sponsor ALOA's 1961 Regional Convention to be held in Elizabeth, N. J., which we did and it was a success.
   who were elected to ALOA's board and worked through to Vice President and President or Chairman of Committees as well as being recognized by other associations are as follows:

Robert Bell, Jr. and Frank McManus were members of the board who helped pioneer the organization of the Associated Locksmiths of America, Inc. (ALOA), to its first official meeting July 15, 1956. Robert Bell, Jr.’s membership card number is No. 5 and Frank McManus’ membership card is No. 11.

Robert Bell Jr., served as an ALOA director from 1956 thru 1959.  He became a Life Member of the ALOA's Board of Trustees in 1960.  In 1975, Robert Bell Jr. became ALOA's Museum Curator/Librarian.  The ALOA Museum was formally named the Robert Bell Jr. Lock Museum in 1976.  Robert Bell Jr. received the coveted Philadelphia Award in 1963.

Frank McManus and Anthony Rocklein were appointed to ALOA's Associated Committee in 1956.  Frank McManus was elected as ALOA Director in 1958 thru 1959.

Constant O. Maffey, also a charter ALOA member, served as a director 1960 thru 1964, Northeastern Vice President 1964 thru 1968, President 1968 thru 1970, Chairman of the Board of Trustees 1970 thru 1972.  He also served on the original Security Standards Committee 1960 thru 1968.  Connie Maffey received the coveted Philadelphia Award in 1972.

Kenneth J. Troy served as ALOA's assistant Convention and Exhibition Chairman 1966 thru 1968, and became Exhibition Chairman 1968 thru 1988. Ken Troy received ALOA's First Annual President's Award in 1976 as one who has contributed to the industry in an outstanding manner.  Kenneth Troy received the National Locksmiths Award for outstanding effort on behalf of Locksmiths in 1979, and he received the coveted Philadelphia Award in 1981

Kenneth E. Dunlap served as an ALOA director 1974 thru 1978, Northeastern Vice President 1979 thru 1981.

Janice Pate designed and developed for ALOA the “Mr. Securi-T".  The ALOA board adopted and copyrighted ''Mr. Securi-T" as ALOA's symbol for our industry’s Public Relations items.

         Henry "Hank” Printz served as an ALOA director 1983 thru 1987, Northeastern Vice President 1987 to the Present.” I was VP until 1991, President from 1991 to 1993 and Trustee 1993 until 1998. I also served as President of SAVTA from 1993 through 1997.

We are also proud of the fact that the following members devoted their own time and money to develop and patent security products, which are presently, sold worldwide:

John Keefe, Sr.
Donald Meyer
Constant O. Maffey

The membership did not devote all their spare time and energy to only ALOA. The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey also grew.  The yearly banquet continued to get bigger and better. The monthly meetings got bigger with education and research on new products and methods of servicing the new products took up the biggest part of the evenings.  Soon weekend classes were being held as well as field trips to various lock factories.
   As the neighboring states started to have mini one day conventions with small trade shows and a few classes, The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey said "Why not us too".  Lets take advantage of all the years of knowledge we have in our membership and put on the biggest show.  This yearly weekend show and classes was the start of The Master Locksmiths Association of New Jersey Trade Shows. 

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