Ben Day (1838 – 1916) was a prolific inventor of printing hardware and processes including the well know Ben Day Dots, most famously known as a process used by Roy Lichtenstein.
The ink roller design was submitted for a patent in 1895 and approved July 7th 1896 under the title "TUBULAR INTERCHANGEABLE PRINTERS ROLLER".
Research leads us to believe that the rollers were not made commercially and that this might be the patent prototype and perhaps a one-off especially with the high quality fitted box.
The original patent paperwork can be downloaded here free of charge
This 13 inch wide roller has been re-covered and is unused.