Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Vintage Thingies Thursday - What Have We Here?

I can not believe that it has been a week since I last posted here. Things have been a buzz at the hive.

I have two very interesting things to share this week. Both of these items were purchased last weekend at an auction. I have seen a lot of old irons, but I have never seen an iron fueled by coal or charcoal. Here it is sitting atop my vintage ironing board. (I am certain that I learned to iron on a board very similar.)A closer look. The brand name of this one is Hero. Doing a search for Hero was not too successful.
My neighbor, Anne, gave me a replica of a 1909 Sears Roebuck and Co. There is a picture of a similar iron. The description says, "Family Charcoal Irons with removable top and hardwood handle with shield. Handsomely nickel plated and elegantly finished, with top finished in gold bronze Is self heating and requires little attention. Uses ordinary charcoal as fuel. Is easily regulated to any desired heat and does away with the hot fire on ironing day." Cost for the one from the Sears catalog was 98 cents.

Here is a look at the inside.

This piece keeps the coal/charcoal from resting on the bottom of the iron.

Looking at the back of the iron, you see the damper which "easily" regulates the heat. The lever with the wooden knob is used to open and lock the top in place after putting in the fuel.
The top would be like the stove pipe or the exhaust.

The weight of this thing amazes me. It weighs ten pounds! Do you think there were a lot of women walking around with the muscles in one arm a lot bigger than the other?

One of the other things I bought at the auction was a box containing some aluminum pitchers, a silver plated compote and these. They have "Made in France" stamped on the bottom. See the little holes in each one.
Look at the cute little legs. Any idea as to what these are called or their use?
This is the only thing I could think that they could be. Holders for eggs...
...to set inside a pot of boiling water for boiled eggs.

Because I know you are all wanting a closer look, here is the lovely tablecloth used for the background of these photos.

If you enjoy looking at vintage, retro and antique items, you will not want to miss a trip to Suzanne's to see what she and others have to share.


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29 comments:

~~Carol~~ said...

I have never heard of an iron using coal! Geez, how dangerous, and another torture device for women! Yes, I'm sure back then women had two different sized arms! Funny! I saw one of those footed thingies somewhere not too long ago, and I can't remember what it was. They truly are thingies!
Happy 4th!

Postcardy said...

That iron looks like a fun thing to have and you can use it for a paperweight or doorstop. I think it's too much trouble to iron anything now, although I used to iron something almost every day.

Janet, said...

that's a neat post. I love the old ironing board and the tablecloth! I never would have guessed that those were egg holders, tho they are kinda handy.

CC said...

I loved your post,and I thought the iron was really cool. However !!, great grief,how long would I last ironing with that thing??? I haven't a clue as to what the little footed thingies are, but your idea sounds great..p.s. Love that tablecloth. Happy VTT..have a safe and wonderful 4th.

Maya said...

And I was complaining having to iron!!! I can only imagine what it must have been like with one of these, although they look pretty cool..., as home accessories.

Coloradolady said...

I have never seen a iron like this...and if it is that heavy, well, lets just say, I don't like to iron with the light weight iron I have....so this one would just be too look cute somewhere...not use! I think this is very interesting for sure.

Love your little footed thingies, they are really cute and unusual, no matter the use. And your tablecloth is just as sweet as it can be. Very nice.

Have a great VTT and a great holiday weekend.

Amy said...

I love your treasures this week especially the iron - how cool!

Roslyn said...

Cool iron-my Mum used flat irons in the Aus. Outback, no electricity! But coals.............?
Love the egg holders, that must be what they are for, very clever of you Bea!

fitty's pinky rose cottage said...

my late grand mother n my great grand mother used to have iron with coal or charcoal. those irons are so heavy.. and normally ironing will take hours upon hours to finish.. i don't know whether those irons are still around at my late grandmother's house.. will do some searching there.. but thanks for reminding me about this iron.. while the egg holder is super cool!.. i think it was for eggs too! thanks for sharing & happy VTT

Keetha Broyles said...

This is such a fun post!!! Your "thingies" this week are way cool. I had heard of/seen that type of iron before - - - but not in THIS detail!!!

I showed your footed spoon thingies to my 80 year old dad, who is here with me on our Wisconsin jaunt, and he wasn't sure what they were either - - - he's pretty "up" on antiques having used them when they were new!!! Hehehehehehehe

Whatever they are SUPPOSED to be - - - I think your idea is the coolest. I'm guessing you are RIGHT

marianedwardsdreamweaver said...

i love those old irons & yours is a beauty..those little holey egg holders are too cute my guess was the same as yours :)

marybt said...

Okay, that's a total hoot that the iron was described as "elegant"! lol.

This is just a guess, but do you think the other things could be used for poaching eggs? The holes would help drain the water off.

Laura said...

I love those irons. How fun that you collect them!

Donna said...

Wow ..very nice!

CHER said...

I am so glad i am not the only one who wonders what things are!!!! Have a blessed day, cher

LV said...

I have sen a lot of different irons during my time, but do not remember ever seeing lone like this. What a great find. Also, I appreciate you dropping by post.

Sarah said...

I really like your charcoal iron...very nice!! The little metal holders sure do look like they should be used for boiling or poaching eggs.

Jan Ely said...

Hi Bea! Thanks for the lesson with these items! I would have been left scratching my head if I hadn't been told what they were!!!!

Miri said...

Wonderful coal/charcoal iron...it was probably the techno wonder of its day-it did mean that you didn't have to keep heating the iron on the hot stove on a hot summer day!

Love the egg cookers...they're like tea bag holders with tall handles!

Angela said...

The egg cooker holders are way too funny that they used those back then! hehehe I think I have heard of the irons used with coal since I live here in coal country USA!

Happy 4th of July!!!

Angela

Sue said...

Now, you really own a unique old iron! I had heard of this type before, but had never even seen a picture. I would definitely had an ironing lady back in those days! I used to have one- she charged 50 cents per dress shirt- I thought it was a bargain. Laundries wreck things, now.

Joan@anythinggoeshere said...

Two of those irons and there would be no need for the gym that's for sure.

Elizabeth said...

My mom has a special basket thingy for boiling eggs, but I've never seen the individuals. Very cool!

mannequin said...

Geez, it's like a steam locomotive. I would have been ostracized for having wrinkly clothes, I feel quite sure.
Still, it's certainly a treasure to display or if your electricity ever gets cut off; you'll still have neatly pressed clothes!

the wild raspberry said...

wow...we've come a long way in the ironing department! great auction finds...
have a wonderful 4th of July weekend.
chasity

farmlady said...

This is a wonderful old iron. Doesn't it amaze you to think about who, originally, thought to iron anything? and then to see the different irons that people invented. Just amazing! This is a very cool iron. Love the red.
I would like to have the tablecloth please. It would go with my mother's china. Is it for sale?
Also, you have inspired me to find an old wood ironing board. I love yours.

Vicky said...

That's really an iron.
I have not personally used one,but I vaguely remembered my grandma used one and she always warns us to keep away from it because it was very hot.
I like the egg holders too.
have a nice week.

Caths Pennies Designs said...

If that little iron could only talk, I bet it has lots of burn stories to tell ... clothes and flesh burns!
Have a wonderful weekend!
Cathy

Patty said...

I've never seen an iron like that either. That's really neat!