Wagner cast iron cookware is regarded by many as some of the finest examples 19 th and 20 th century cast iron. This could be due to the fact, much of the cast iron is over years old and still very usable today. These antique pans are sought-after by enthusiasts and those preferring vintage cast iron to newer pans. But identifying and dating these old Wagner Ware Sidney -o- pans can be tricky. So, with this article I hope to help you and other proud owners, identify and to give an estimate on the age of your cookware.
Renowned for their durability, cast-iron skillets, pots, and baking pans last for generations and are commonly sought out at antique malls, estate auctions and yard sales. Each piece often provides only a few inconspicuous, cryptic markings to help decipher its quality, history and value. A manufacturer of cast-iron cookware often stamps its name in large text on the underside of the piece.
For example, Wagner, Griswold, Lodge, Wapak and Favorite are some common names seen in cast-iron cookware. A number corresponding to the cast-iron cookware's size usually appears on the top of the handle or on the underside of the piece.
Standard-size numbers, starting with the smallest, range from 2 to 14, and then jump to 20, the largest. Produced to fit in the circular openings in the tops of wood stoves, cast-iron cookware uses a sizing system with numbers corresponding not to the actual dimensions of the piece, but to the opening size in which they fit.
Though each brand produces roughly the same dimensions for each size number, they often measure slightly differently, so that a "6" pan made by one company may be a little larger than one made by another.
Each manufacturer uses a slightly different numbering system and within each company pattern, numbers may differ depending when and where the piece was made. For example, Lodge pans were marked with 8 for inch pans while Wagners were marked with 3, S, or H. Lodge pans are also sometimes with letters. These markings may be inside the bowl of the pan, somewhere on the handle, or both. It may be embossed, recessed, or carved onto the pan.
So if your pan has embossed letters and numbers, it was probably cast later. The bottom of the pan will often have other details too.
Dec 15, A manufacturer of cast-iron cookware often stamps its name in large text on the underside of the piece. For example, Wagner, Griswold, Lodge, Wapak and Favorite are some common names seen in cast. The Cast Iron Collector: Information for the Vintage Cookware Enthusiast. Learn how to identify, clean, restore, season and use collectible antique cast iron cookware. but whose development was possibly cut short by the acquisition of Griswold by Wagner Ware. Information dating it to as early as has been found. Lodge Manufacturing Co. The Wagner Manufacturing company began making cookware in in Sidney, Ohio. Today, collectors prize Wagner cast iron frying pans, Dutch ovens and bakeware for both its beauty and durability. You can find Wagner cookware at garage and estate sales, .
These letters are common on vintage Lodge cast iron pieces. Other brands like Wagner will sometimes use letters instead, like H. Pans are also sometimes marked with model numbers like 8, 10, or The numbers might match the gas numbers on your cooker, or they might be a code to show you the diameter of your cast iron pan.
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In the past, we cooked on stone hearths or log fires. Then we moved to charcoal grills, electric coils, and finally induction plates.
Buying Tips for Cast Iron
Some pans e. Lodge pans have recessed heating rings on their outer edges. These were intended to snugly fit your electric heating filament.
Other pans have extruded heat rings e. Griswold pansor they might have three or four projecting nodes or notches.
These nodes or notches enable your pan to sit on gas grills or electric heating plates without slipping off.
A lot of people prefer vintage or antique cast iron. The main reasons vintage cast iron is preferred are; the cookware tends to be lighter and a lot smoother than cast iron cookware made today. Cast iron cookware made between the late 19th and the early 20th century is preferred by collectors. Founded in South Pittsburgh, Tennessee, in , the company is still family owned and still producing cast iron. Advancements in technology and enhancements of cast iron have enabled the company to remain competitive in the field of cast iron cookware. Identifying Antique Cast Iron Skillets. Look at the bottom of a cast iron skillet. Our American-made cast iron cookware is both versatile and durable. It's the perfect kitchen tool for beginners, home cooks, and chefs alike. Enameled Cast Iron We combined the superior heat retention of cast iron with the beauty of enamel to create a versatile, show-stopping kitchen workhorse. Marinate, serve, and refrigerate all with the same.
Lodge pans commonly used between one and three heating notches at the bottom. Newer pans may have concave bottoms for heat distribution.
Identify and date your Wagner cast iron cookware using logos. Also learn the fascinating history of Wagner Manufacturing. Wagner cast iron cookware is regarded by many as some of the finest examples 19 th and 20 th century cast iron. This could be due to the fact, much of the cast iron is over years old and still very usable today.
The numbers at the bottom could be a hint too. If it has a 3 or 4-digit code with a three-hole-handle, whether the numbers are slanted or straight, it could be a Griswold. One of the distinguishing markers of a pan is the sides.
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But some saucepans have pour spouts. In older pans, the pour spouts were bigger. Also, older pans had two pour spouts while newer ones might have one.
Contemporary cast iron pans might also have a helper handle and non-stick coatings, which are both newer. Wagners often have spiral grooves tooled onto the inner base while Griswolds are flat. Lodges are sometimes rough with pebbly textures.
On the other hand, if your pan has two short handles and a dimpled lid, it could be Birmingham. Also, these handles may be riveted onto the bowl of the pan, and are generally made of stainless steel.
Older cast iron skillets have integrated handles that are part of the bowl with no screws or rivets.
They also have a smooth finish, unlike modern cast iron which may be grooved for silicone grips. Wagner pans often have a little v-shaped ledge between the bowl and the handle.
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Wagners and Griswolds have a triangular-shaped wedge on the rear side of the handle while others are rounded.
The wedge nestles in your palm, unlike other brands whose ergonomic curves are comfier.
Their handle hoops also have a distinctly dipped section towards the center of the hole. That said, Griswolds and Wagners are similar, especially after the two manufacturers merged.
Dating Wagner Cast Iron. How Old Is My Wagner Cast Iron Skillet? I would say the s - early s made cast iron cookware is still pretty darn good and probably some of those pieces are better than what you can get today. (Read more about Wagner Cast Iron). Skillet 1. CAST IRON SKILLET at the 12 o'clock position GRISWOLD logo inside of 2 rings about 4 inches around at 6 o'clock ERIE PA U.S.A under that appears to be P04 and 8 on the top side base of handle. Skillet 2 reads Good Health at 12 o'clock, Skillet in the center and 8 under the word skillet. Jul 04, For example, if you have a cast iron skillet that has only markings on the bottom that say VICTOR 8, try a Google images search for "Victor 8 cast iron skillet", and see if a match to your pan shows up in the images. If not, try broadening the search, to "Victor cast iron skillet." Many images result from the search.
Lots of modern writers like to research and write non-fiction historical tomes. But brands do it too. You can even buy digital versions of the book.
Dating cast iron cookware
Almost all pans have a letter or number at the bottom. Every number has its own significance. It may refer to the outer or inner diameter for flared pansthe year and place of manufacture, or the pan model. Wagners have their number and letter written in the handle of the pan, not just the bowl.
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The handle markings are repeated at the front and back of the handle. Meanwhile, Griswold pans sometimes have italicized 4-digit codes on the back of the pan. These are likely to be part of the Iron Mountain Collection. The shape of the number helps too.
Lodges from to often have embossed numbers while other brands are recessed.