Collecting miniature stoves

Cast-iron stoves were popular in American kitchens during the 1840s. American toymakers were keen to capitalise on this and produced miniature versions.

Notable makers include Kenton, Hubley and Stevens. Values vary depending on maker, size, style and detail. Original accessories including metal and enamel pans add to desirability, as can enamelling.

As electric ovens took over in real life from the 1920s on, the manufacture of cast-iron toy stoves declined. Cheaper plastic models aided their demise during the 1940s.

Some miniature stoves were not toys, but were samples for real stove salesmen and both samples and toys are highly collectable. But it's likely the majority of examples found are toys including this Detroit Stove Works stove valued at £950 to £1,100.

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