Identifying Old Cast Iron Pans

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A guide to identifying antique cast iron skillets produced by several American manufacturers during the first half of the 20th century. Antique vendors (and especially eBay vendors) tend to price antique cast iron in two categories: overpriced “hot” names (especially Griswold and Wagner), and unknown “unmarked” cast iron pans that sell at a far lower price. This video offers tips on what to look for when you discover an “unmarked” cast iron pan, to determine the age and manufacturer of the pan — and this will help you strike a good bargain or avoid being cheated.

(This video was produced in early 2014. Since that time, research by cast iron cookware hobbyists has shown that the year 1960 was *not* the cut-off date when companies began marking pans “Made In USA.” I’ve been trying to correct that information in the video. Different companies began marking their pans with “Made In USA” during the 1960s: with Wagner (which then owned Griswold), they began marking their pans “Made In USA” during the early-to-mid 1960s. Birmingham Stove & Range has a fairly exact date: they started marking the pans in 1967 through 1968, and *most* but not all of their pans after 1968 were marked “Made In USA.” Lodge started marking their pans “Made In USA” during the late 1960s.)

This video is nearly thirty minutes long, and it is divided into several chapters:
– Introduction
– Identifying marks on a cast iron pan: 3:10
– Lodge Manufacturing: 6:31
– Wagner and Griswold “unmarked” pans: 10:37
– Birmingham Stove & Range: 14:09
— Additional information on BS&R: http://www.modemac.com/bsr
– 19th century cast iron pans: 18:20
– Cast iron pans from Asia: 21:13
– Other cast iron manufacturers: 23:32
– Links to videos on cleaning and restoring old cast iron: 26:04

Cast Iron Chaos on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CastIronChaos

For more information and tips on identifying, restoring, cleaning, and especially cooking with antique cast iron pans, visit Facebook’s Cast Iron Cooking group: http://www.facebook.com/groups/castironskillet/

My own Web site, Cast Iron Chaos, offers additional pages and links to sources of information on cooking in cast iron: http://www.modemac.com/wiki/Cast_Iron

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