Saturday, November 22, 2008

Wagner and Wagner Ware

People are funny. When it comes to old cast iron the name Griswold gets the collector's heart to beat a little faster and to grab their wallets. Erie, Martin, BS&R, Favorite...collectors will be on those like stink on a monkey. Wagner and Wagner Ware (did you know there was a difference?) seem to get less respect and I think that's both good and bad.
It is good because as users of old cast iron we get to buy some superb pieces for a lot less money than a comparable Griswold. It is bad because I think the old Wagner and Wagner Ware pieces deserve a little more respect. A Wagner Ware #8 skillet like the one pictured above can be easily purchased for less than twenty five dollars. Mine will cook omelets better than some Teflon-coated sissy pan yet they do seem a bit under appreciated. Maybe there is resentment that Wagner eventually ended up owning Griswold right around the time the quality of both brands went sharply downhill?
The name "Wagner" did not appear on skillets after 1922. When you find one like this #10 shown above you are looking at an old piece. The Sidney, O. stands for Sidney Ohio. The Chicken Fryer, lid and the #8 skillet were probably cast in the 1940s.

The Wagner Manufacturing Company was founded in Sidney OH in 1891. It became one of the two largest makers of cast iron cookware along with Griswold and continued to be a family owned company until the mid 1950s. After being sold to the Randall Company, Griswold was also acquired in 1957 (you can find pieces with both markings). In the years that followed a series of transactions took place that ended up seeing the Sidney foundry close in 2000.

Lehman's is currently selling a Wagner Ware 3 skillet set that they report as being "USA made". I have not seen these pieces nor do I know where the foundry is located. It is possible that these skillets were cast prior to the closure of the Sidney OH foundry and are now being "finished" here.

Some production has occurred in China since the Sidney OH foundry closed.

122 comments:

Anonymous said...

Black Iron Dude-

Thanks for the excellent blog on cast iron and cooking with it.

I had a few questions I was hoping you could help me with.

I have a wagnerware skillet from my grandmother but its cracked down the middle.

1. Is there an easy way to tell when it was made or get more info about it?

2. Anything I can do about the crack? If not any suggestions for replacing it? I'd like to try to find one similar made during the same period for use and keep the other for memories sake.

Thanks for the help.

Greg said...

Hi Anon,
Anytime you want a piece of cast iron identified most of the information will be found on the bottom.

What does the skillet have for markings on it? Does it have a heat ring? I'll look it up and give you an idea of the age/production date range.

Forget repairing the skillet. Hang it on your wall to remember your grandmother.

To replace it I'd contact David Smith "the Pan Man" (author of the books used by most collectors). There is a link to his site on this page. Ebay would be my second choice.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Greg -

It has the script Wagner Ware on it and -O- under it. I don't have it with me, I'll get the numbers if I can read them tonight at home.

The skillet doesn't have a heat ring, its 3" deep about 10" across and has a notch at the top similar to this (I believe to use it as a dutch oven). I was given another skillet with it (to set on top) but I'm not sure if it was part of an original set as its doesn't have any markings.

Thanks again for looking into it, if this info doesn't help I will for sure get the numbers tonight.

Thanks again.

David

Anonymous said...

Finally got to this sorry for the delay. The numbers are worn off due to the crack.

Can't tell what the 2nd number is but looks like it says 1x02. Might be 1402 but its hard to tell.

Don't know if that's enough but thanks again for looking into it.

Greg said...

Sorry David, I did not notice this new comment (even though I moderated it).

It sounds like a set of Wagner Ware Double Skillets from the 1930-40s.

Keep your eyes open for a replacement and look for a set in good condition. I bet you'll find it.

Greg said...

According to an index I have the 1402T was a "Combination Fryer - Roaster (double skillet).

Dave said...

Thanks for the info Greg, finally registered, love the blog. Starting a cast iron collection. Just made a chicago stuffed deep dish pizza in cast iron the other night. It was great.

30-40's makes sence my mom was telling me it was my grandmothers wedding present from from her parents. Thanks again for looking it up.

Greg said...

Thanks for reading the blog.

I'm glad to hear that you kept your Grandmother's iron. I've never been able to figure out why people want to sell heirlooms.

Kayla said...

Found this site because I was searching for another Wagner Ware Magnalite griddle broiler like the one my grandmother gave me about 35 years ago. My son and girlfriend warped it by over heating it and not watching it. It is aluminum and so cool. Just like the old, well-used one my grandmother had. Don't know where that one ended up. Love the old cookware. Can't buy decent pans today, it seems. Old waffle irons make nice, crisp waffles, but new ones make awful waffles that are not crisp. Texture is everything.
Love this site!!

Greg said...

Kayla - Thanks for reading!

You are correct, I have a newer waffle iron and it just doesn't produce very good waffles. (Plus I'm trying to stay away from Teflon)

There is an old cast iron Griswold waffle iron on my project list. I'll wait for warmer weather to clean it (with Electrolysis) as it has lots of nooks and cranies.

Hopefully the results will be worth it!

Anonymous said...

I am a cast iron gal from way back I learned how to strip cast iron pans about 45 years ago, everyone in my family when they went camping always brought the families cast iron pans and tossed them in the camp fire and that burned off any crusties, I have the pans to this day handed down to me. SINCE I am not into camping any more I will use the method I see here with the oven cleaner.. Thanks for the tips..

Anonymous said...

This site is fantastic! A few days ago, I discovered that I have three (3) Wagner Ware pieces. These pans have been with me for approx. thirty years. They were pretty "seasoned" when I got them. To be honest, they're in need, "big-time," for a refurbishing. I know this is will take serious work too. For starters, I cannot find any information/guesstimation on their production dates. I have a 1053G #3, a 1056 #6, and a 1058T #8. Any assistance provided will be appreciated, and thanks in advance.

Greg said...

Anonymous,

See http://blackirondude.blogspot.com/2009/01/easy-cast-iron-skillet-reconditioning.html

If your 3 frying pans look like the one in that article (no heat ring, stylized Wagner Ware logo) they were made between 1935 and 1959. They are great to use daily so put yours back to work.

Anonymous said...

Greetings, Greg

Thanks, for your prompt reply. As I type, #3 and #6 (of these Wagner Ware "-O-"s) are "soaking-down," in Easy-Off as you prescribed. Although anxious, I'm short of leasing a jackhammer for #8, and will hold-off on that one for a few. ;-) Again, I commend your efforts in sharing and in "reach one, teach one." Not only will I apprise you of my interesting, and challenging, undertaking, I'll reference your site to others. An astounding round of applause!

Anonymous said...

I have a square skillet that is a Wagner Ware Sidney O. Pat Pending 1101B, It says it is a bacon and egg breakfast skillet. I have not seen any like this and can you give me an approx date and cost of the skillet. It is in excellant condition, slight rust on the bottom an clean inside. It has three divisions inside the pan.
Thanks! Frances

Greg said...

Anon - I've been out of town and away from my reference books.

The 1101 series seems to have started in the mid 1920s. You see a fair number for sale on eBay though most are the later versions with the square handle and thumbprint depression.

Value should be approx. 35-50 dollars in excellent condition.

Anonymous said...

Hello, your blog is a treat-great information!

Since becoming disgusted with throwing away yet another teflon frying pan I've decided to go back to cast iron.Sadly for me, I gave all mine away a few years ago and have to start over.

You mention that there was a period when the quality of Wagner and Griswold cast iron declined. How would I avoid these pieces? Are there particular markings to look for? I just bought a #8 Wagner ware 1058 M and would like to know the timeframe of it's make and it's quality.

Thanks! Bobbi

Greg said...

Hi Bobbi,

Thanks for reading and commenting!

Your Wagner Ware 1058 was made sometime between 1935-1959.

The date of the decline depends on who you talk to. I think the preWW2 stuff is nicer than the postwar and around 1960 there was a noticeable decline as that's when the foundries began machine casting their pieces.

I consider Wagner Wares like yours to be great "user" skillets. I have a similar 1058 that I use to make omelets. I should buy a video camera and post a video of just how nonstick good old cast iron can be.

As you are finding out, you don't need Teflon.

I avoid Griswolds with the small logo and Wagner Wares that describe the pan (10 inch skillet) rather than use numbers (1058). Anything with both logos is suspect. The Wagner 1891 stuff is pretty crude too. They may be fine users but they aren't as nicely made.

Hope that helps.

nick9917 said...

Hi. I am hoping that you can help. I have two pieces that I am not finding much on. First is a Wagner's Original 1891 13 3/8 skillet and the second is a 60 Qt pot that has Wagner Ware(same W) Sidney O, 1821o on the bottom. The pot has 2 handles and is more like an aluminum material. Could you help on any info or value?
Thank You.

Greg said...

Hi Nick,

The Wagner 1891 line was Wagner Ware's last gasp. Produced in the early 1990s these pieces can be quite crude and they have no collector value. If you like yours as a user keep on using it.

I don't have any info on the aluminum pot. The 1821 does not match up to any index I have but my books are about cast iron.

You might get an answer on the Wagner and Griswold Society webpage. See the links section on this site.

Anonymous said...

Greg, I was at a yard sale today and found a WagnerWare 1401-c. I don't know much about this piece, but I asked my wife if she wanted it, and she did, so I purchased it for $6.00.
It's in real good shape, and Charlene says she wants to use it. It is nickel plated. The lady who was selling it said it wasn't a matched pair, but I knew better because the shallow skillet is made to fit on the 3" deep one as a lid. What can you tell me about it.

Thanks!

Steve

Greg said...

Steve, You got it right.

The 1401 is the top skillet and the 1402 is the deeper bottom skillet.

Shallow skillets can be handy. The double skillet is appealing to my fondness for "multiple use" items.

In the 1920s WW made a double skillet with a funky ball and socket hinge.

Good luck at those yard sales!

Anonymous said...

Greg,
The top says 1401-C with the letter B underneath, and 'patent pending' above. The bottom, 3" deep skillet say 1401 with the letter I below. There is a heat ring on the bottom. Both pieces have the WagnerWare Sidney -O- mark. Do you know the approximate year of manufacture?

Thanks!

Steve

Greg said...

Steve - The "Red" book says circa 1930s.

Here are the catalog numbers:

cast iron - 1401 - double skillet

nickel - 1401 - double skillet Bottom

chrome - 1401 - top skillet for combination fryer/roaster

I'd guess the I and the B were the caster's marks.

Your skillet is marked like the natural cast iron but you say it has a nickle finish. Make sure it isn't paint before you use it.

Anonymous said...

Definitely not paint. I think that the 'C' may indicate chrome, as this finish is bright near the handle end, and flaked off in a solid, shiny piece when I scratched it with a sharp tool at the edge of an already chipped part at the handle end. I've got some photos I'd email them if you would like to see them.

Thanks!

Steve

Karoline said...

Greg - oddly enough, i just bought a 1401 deep skillet (I'd guess the bottom skillet) today. It does look like it has a nickle coating on it, which has chipped somewhat along the top rim of the pan. Is there any concern about using the pan as it is or any way to remove the nickle coating and take it down to cast iron?
Karoline

Greg said...

Hi Karoline - If you are concerned about the nickle on the inside of the pan (I'm guessing the coating does not cover the cooking surface?) you could scrub the nickle with an abrasive sponge to see if any will flake off.

I'd leave the exterior alone. You would be looking at a lot of work to remove all the coating.

Removing the nickle from the inside could be done but doing so will kill any $$$ value the piece has. If you just want a nice deep skillet for daily use and don't plan to sell it may be a project worth tackling.

I'd use a round wire brush on a power drill if I had to do it. Do NOT polish the cooking surface.

Karoline said...

I would guess that you are correct about the nickle coating on the pan. It seems to be on the outside and down about 1" all around on the inside of the pan. The bottom 3/4 of the sides and the inside bottom of the pan are black and look like very nice smooth cast iron. Did they typically coat the entire pan or only part of it in nickle?

Greg said...

I only have one nickel piece.

It is a Griswold #4 skillet and it is like yours. They left the cooking surface bare iron.

Anonymous said...

Dear Dude again, Just check out the pan again and I'm pretty sure the second "color" comes from old seasoning. So I'm off for some Easy Off. Still, worth the effort? And can I just go to any hardware store for a lid? Again and again, Thanks. Anne

Greg said...

"Dear Dude, I wish I had found your site earlier! I inherited a 12" Wagner Ware Sidney O 1062A frying pan from my mother's basement. Since she was a great cook but no housekeeper, it was covered in rust. I brought it home to Colorado and just finished soaking it in Cola for 3 months (don't ask about what else seems to be growing in that medium!) and, after scrubbing with a chore-boy type thing, almost all of the rust is off but the pot is still different colors so more stuff must be on it. I'm thinking about the oven cleaner method and then seasoning it. Is it worth this time and effort? Any other ideas? Many thanks, Anne"

Hi Anne,

I fat fingered it and accidentally rejected your first comment. My bad!

Yes I bet it will be worth it. As long as that old Wagner Ware isn't cracked or warped it is a better pan than you can buy brand new today. Plus it has been in your family for a long time.

Instead of money you are investing time and effort.

Question: Did the cola eat into the surface of the metal or is it still smooth? You've probably heard the stories about Coke dissolving nails so I'm curious.

Greg said...

Anne - Re: the lid a Lodge 12" lid may fit but I'd bring your old skillet and test it.

Even if the diameters are the same older skillets have larger pouring spouts so a new lid may not cover those.

Dutch Oven lids do not cover the spouts. When you see a lid that has the corresponding "ears" you know you are looking at a skillet lid.

Ebay is always an option if you are patient.

Anonymous said...

Dear Greg, Thanks for responding so quickly (this is my first blog question and it's SO cool!). The cola bath did not take off anything but the rust but, as mentioned, it wasn't quick work. I also threw in some rusty garden tools (my Mom lived in New Jersey, the rust capital of the world) and it worked much faster with them. Your right about the spouts on the lid. Tricky. Ebay will be new to me but I'll give it a try. I'm looking forward to using the pot. I'm thinking that it may have been my grandmothers. Do you have any idea when it was made? Thanks again, Anne

Greg said...

Anne - If there is no heat ring on the bottom it was probably made between 1935-1959.

If there is a heat ring it could be another 10 years older.

Thanks for reading the blog!

Greg

Anonymous said...

Greg:

My grandmother taught me to cook...in cast-iron. I hated the weight and left granny for newer, lighter weight cookware and burnt everything! Since those years of 3-alarm dinner bells I have gone back to the tried and true cooking methods grandma taught me in the first place. When I sent my sons off to either the military or to college, I sent along a well-loved pan and my blessings. My question for you is...I found a hammered finish,plated 1057 H.S. Wagner at a sale. I've never seen one before. Any ideas on age?
Christine

Greg said...

Hi Christine - Those hammered chrome Wagner Wares were made in the 1940s.

Glad to hear you sent your sons off with cast iron. Most of us stray from it initially but return to it after the "other stuff" is found wanting.

Thanks for reading and commenting!

Greg

glenda said...

This is such awesome info!
Thanks for your time and knowledge.

Here's my questions. I received a set of Wagner Ware Sidney -O- as a wedding gift in 1971. Here are the numbers on the bottom of each pot.
4248 P - (5 quart pot)
4683 P
4681 1 1/2P
4508P - 10" Fry Pan.
I have spoken to American Culinary and emailed them many times because my dearly loved and well used 5 quart pot is now "pitted" and warped. The fry pan is also warped.

It has been 38 years since I recieved this as a gift but American Culinary is telling me these pots were not sold in the 70's. I know it was a brand new set b/c I opened the box. Do you know if they were sold in 1970? Also, I thought they had a lifetime warranty. This does sound too good to be true but I really thought they did.

The company asked me for pictures of the damage and the bottom of the pots. I sent them to Mr. Peter Pike as requested by him, but all I get from American Culinary are incomplet answers. Like "these pots were not made to be used on a high flame". I don't believe that, but I could be wrong.

What is your advice about the warranty? Would you like to see the pictures?

Greg said...

Hi Glenda - According to my copy of "The Book of Wagner and Griswold" those numbers correspond to Magnalite which was Wagner's aluminum line of cookware.

I don't know much about this line. You could probably find some Magnalite collectors who would be more helpful.

FWIW - No cookware does well when placed over a high flame. When I was a line cook we used high heat all the time and every one of the commercial aluminum saute pans was warped in a short time period.

If you need to use high heat (and you want to preserve your pans) heat the pans up slowly. Rapid thermal change causes the warping.

Hope this helps.

bhappy said...

Hi Black Iron Dude
I have a Wagner Ware No 8 drip drop roaster, #1268. The silvery top is black/rusty looking where the silvery finish wore off and the inside of the top is rusty. Is this beyond its useful life or is there hope for its future? How should I clean it (wouldn't use it as is, or season it)
The inside of the roaster is black and looks ok

Peter Pike, Pres/CEO said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dave said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Greg said...

Peter - You are in the business of selling cast iron and your first move here is to insult a blogger who advocates the use and collection of American Made cast iron cookware?

Curious.

PS - IF you still actually produce cast iron cookware in the US you are doing an awful job of making that known.

You can find my email link in the Profile section.

Dave - Thanks for the support. This blog is nothing but a hobby and as it says in the Profile section this site contains my opinions.

I will exercise my authority as Supreme Leader of this blog to keep the comments civil so everybody keep that in mind.

Anonymous said...

I just bought a dutch oven with no lid to use frying fish, To save my other for apple crisp! after looking at this site I'm thinking of finding a lid for it, any ideas? It has wagner ware sidney O 1268A on the bottom. Thanks, for the help.

Greg said...

Anonymous - Your DO is a #8 and I seen lids for those on ebay all the time.

You might like this post as well.
http://blackirondude.blogspot.com/2009/03/old-wagner-ware-dutch-ovens.html

Good luck hunting for the lid!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the reply, I will check e-bay for a lid, Any idea on the age? I love the old iron, the import modern junk just doesn't cook the same. Great site!

cash68 said...

Awesome site! I just recently divorced and my whore of an ex wife took all of my cookware, so I scrounged up stuff from my mother's basement. I found my grandmother's old cast iron skillet... Wagner Ware "1060", it looks like. Any information would be appreciated, I already have it soaking in oven cleaner! I'm pretty pumped about it! :)

Anonymous said...

I recently acquired two 6 quart wagner original 1981 dutch ovens without the lids. I know they have been used before, but I'm not sure whether the coating is still intact enough to cook straight away. Would a touch-up seasoning be a good way to start? Also, where would I go to get some lids? They look to be in great condition, just needed an attentive budding cook to take care of them. Any suggestions would be appreciated!

Anonymous said...

I just recently was given a Wagner Ware 10 inch skillet with 1060s on the bottome of it. Can anyone tell me how old this skillet is? Thanks!

Greg said...

cash68 and Anonymous - I need more info than just the model number to narrow it down but between 1924 and 1960 is most likely.

Do the skillets have a heat ring? Is the handle ridged or is there a reinforcing pad where the handle meets the skillet body?

Anonymous - Are you guys related? I would recommend a thorough cleaning down to bare iron as you just can't tell how they were used before you acquired them.

I've heard of people draining their engine oil into old cast iron.

Joy said...

Hello, I was wondering what the value is of a Wagner Ware #1312 round 7 golf ball muffin type pan. Can't find anything on the internet. Thanks

Greg said...

Joy - a 1312 is listed as a 9 inch Aebleskiver (Danish Cake) pan.

I don't know what the value is on those.

A Simple girl in a Complicated world... said...

Hi, I just inherited a Wagner Wear 1060s skillet...it looks to be in great condition, can you tell me a little bit about it? Also, if I were to collect more, for use which pieces are the most useful? I love to cook :)

Btw this site is awesome, I have enjoyed reading everyone's stories and comments..

Thank you,

Amber lynn

IsamarDesigns said...

Hi Black Iron Dude!

I just stumbled across your site while looking for information on cleaning old cast iron and discovered there is quite a market for vintage cast iron. Thank you for providing such a wealth of information in one site!

After discovering that there are sought after brands of cast iron, I decided to go and check the cast iron pans I have and saw that my griddle is marked "Wagner." I haven't been able to find any information about it and was wondering if you could help me date it. My In-Laws gave it to us, but didn't tell us anything about its history. Its a 24" rectangular double skillet that has the markings: "Wagner" 10 stamped on the cooking surface. It doesn't have any other markings that I could find. Is it possible to date it? Thank you for your help.

-Heather

bhappy said...

Hi Black Iron Dude
I have a Wagner Ware No 8 drip drop roaster, #1268. The silvery outside is black/rusty looking where the silvery finish wore off and the inside of the top is rusty. There is some pitted rust on the bottom of the roaster. The inside of the roaster is a little bumpy and has a water spot. Is this beyond its useful life or is there hope for its future? How should I clean it (wouldn't use it as is, or season it)
The inside of the roaster is black and looks ok

Greg said...

A Simple girl - Hi Amber Lynn, does the skillet have a smooth bottom or a raised heat ring? More info = a more precise guess.

With a heat ring approx 1924 -1935 without 1935 to 1959.

See this article on my idea for a starter collection for daily use.

http://blackirondude.blogspot.com/2008/09/what-cast-iron-would-i-buy-if-starting.html

IsamarDesigns - If it says Wagner rather than Wagner Ware it is quite old. These were called a Long Griddle and were made between 1900 to 1915.

Very nice, use low to med-low heat and let it warm up slowly and it will last close to forever.

bhappy - I know very little about the nickle and chrome plated pieces because they just don't catch my eye.

Some collectors use LYE or lye based oven cleaner spray (most brands have lye, read the label) to clean these pieces.

See this article for the cleaning and reconditioning steps.

http://blackirondude.blogspot.com/2009/01/easy-cast-iron-skillet-reconditioning.html

When you are done the piece should be very useful. The interior is the most important piece of the equation.

Kathy said...

I have a round griddle pan from my grandmother that says Wagner Ware, Sidney -O- and at the bottom 1109 D can you tell me about it? Also, its surface is crackled around the edges, do you know how I can repair it? I also have a corn bread pan, shaped like corn that says, Krusty Korn Kobs The number is 1319 and there's a date July 6, 192? I'm not interested in selling these pieces, just learning about them.
Thanks,
Kat

Thumper said...

I need help IDing this skillet.#8 Wagner Ware 10 in. x 3 in. Deep Cast Iron Skillet Marked 1088s on the bottom. No fire ring. 8 on handle. Could you tell me when it was made?
Thank you

Greg said...

Kathy - 1930s-1950s on the griddle. I have one just like it.

If the iron is cracked there is no way to repair it. Are you sure it isn't the seasoning that is marred?

Krusty Korn Kob 1319 was the junior size and those were made from the 1940s -1960s.

Kathy said...

Thanks Greg,

No, the cast iron isn't cracked I don't think. Around the edge that is slightly raised, it looks like chipping black paint. I've tried to scrub it off, but can remove only tiny amounts, and suggestions? Also what is your feeling on seasoning? I have read conflicting advice about using veg oil, some advise it and others say no it gets sticky.

bhappy said...

There were a couple of nice pages of pictures and a little info on the cast irons in the October Martha Stewart Living magazine. It's worth a look, there was a corn cob pan that was rather old.
bhappy

Kyle said...

Hello B.I.D...

...all I wanted was a cast iron skillet to replace some crappy one from the 70's my mother had that were made in Korea...

...flea market, today, $3 later, found one even in my ignorance I could tell was well-made.

This site took me to slightly less ignorant: It's a Wagner Ware O 1058V, heat ring, and I guess the reinforced handle at the base. I don't think I've seen cast iron this good in a store. It's in great shape besides a little rust.

I bookmarked your "how to," to strip and care for my new pan, and believe me, it's going to work for me. Fried chicken, fish, omelets... I can't wait. I have a fondness for older, useful items of the world, it seems I did okay.

Thanks for the excellent site! I think my $3 was probably pretty well spent.

KW

Anonymous said...

i came across old Wagner ware Sidney -0- picnicer (pat pend) grill. has a shelf under it with folding legs. looks as if shelf was ment for a fire on it to heat the top. i am trying to find a value on it for it is in pretty good shape i even thought of using when camping anything you can get me on this would be great i have yet to find much on my own with the seaching of the net.. thanks pls email to dogorman007@msn.com

Anonymous said...

My wife's mother gave us a flat bottom #8 Wagner Ware (same "W")Sidney -O- 1058C skillet. I used your site to recondition the pan and it turned out beautifully. Do you know how old the pan is? DaveP

Greg said...

1935-1959

Anonymous said...

after some dumpster diving recently, i found a two cast skillets. the first says Wagner Wear at the top, and at the bottom it sats 11 3/4 inch skillet, made in USA, and the letter A under it. the second skillet has a fire ring, no writing on the back, on the handle has a raised number 3 on it. can you provide me with any info? thank you in advance

Greg said...

Anon - the Wagner Ware sounds like it was cast sometime in the 1960 - 1980s.

A Raised #3 sounds like an old Lodge.

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I have a #8 griddle I acquired recently. One the back it reads KS&R CO SHEFFIELD ALA. With what research I have done on the internet I believe it stands for King Stove and Range Co. which was later purchased by Martin Stove. I have not seen any of these on the internet at all and cannot find any with any searches. Do you know anything about them and are they that uncommon?

Kirk said...

Hello, I inherited a Wagner Ware skillet from my grandmother, and I love it! I want to know more about it. It has 1357 at the bottom- what does this # stand for?

Anonymous said...

Hello! What a great site!
I just purchased a hand-hammered cast iron nickel or chrome plated 10" Dutch oven with lid. There are no markings on it except a B on the inside of the lid. There are two concentric raised and (purposefully)gapped rings on the bottom of the lid also. The B marking is within the smaller of the two rings. There are grooves on the handles. I was told it was a Wagner piece from the 20s but knowing nothing about this older cast iron, I am hoping you could tell me if that is a typical marking for Wagner, or perhaps something else? Any other elucidation on the piece would be highly appreciated! Thank you.

kajo55 said...

This blog is such a great find...thanks for all the valuable info!

I have an old 10 or 11 inch griddle that my dad brought with him from Iowa to Idaho some time in the early to mid 1920s. My mother fixed many breakfasts on that griddle when I was a child, so its value to me is purely sentimental, although it is in excellent shape. The lettering on the back is, 'Wagner Ware Sidney -0-', with the serial number 1110 B. If you have already posted info on this particular griddle, I missed it. Do you know the approximate year it would have been made? I don't know if it was old or new when my dad brought it to Idaho.

Thanks!
Kathy

James said...

Hi Greg,
I had acquired a Wagner Ware -O- back around 1991 while stationed at Ft. Bliss, TX after Desert Storm, and had began the journey of using only cast iron at that time, I have since accumulated a few pieces of Lodge stuff, both new and old, and still see cast iron as the only way to cook.
Your site has provided me with a bit of knowledge I was lacking about my original piece, I see it is probably older than 1959, so I like.
What are your thoughts about newer Lodge castings?
Thanks for your hard work here, Sir.
Bon Appetit!
-James

Greg said...

Hi James - Thanks for reading the blog!

I always say if you have to buy new then buy Lodge. It seems to me that they are making better cast iron now than they did 10 and 20 years ago.

The newer Lodge iron is nicer than the pieces I bought back in the early 1990s.

I usually prefer older iron unless I'm using fairly high heat.

BTW - I use a bunch of aluminum and stainless cookware. Horses for courses.

Jennifer said...

This is such a great wealth of information! I've been wondering for years about a Wagner Ware pan given to my by my grandmother. Could you please tell me when it was made and any other info you have on it? I would be VERY grateful! Number on the handle is 8; on the bottom it reads Wagner Ware Sidney -O- 1088 H

Thanks for the info on refusbing too!!! Sincerely, Jennifer

Greg said...

Hi Jennifer - A 1088 is a chicken fryer just like the one pictured up above.

1930s to late 1950s is the likely time range on that piece.

mt said...

Greg, thanks for this terrific site. My cast iron is my dear Grandmother's.
Its black, has:
Wagner
are
Sidney
-0-

and 10 c on bottom.
can u date possibly date it? It has heat ring but no other markings. Its identical to one of u'r pictures. I love it. thx. Mary

Greg said...

mt - If the Wagner Ware logo is in the center of the bottom approx 1920 -1930

If the WW is near the 12 o'clock position (the handle being at 6 o'clock) it is more like 1925 to 1935.

Being more precise than that is difficult because there are plenty of examples of "transition pieces" that show characteristics of different periods.

wreif said...

Did they ever put griswold lids with wagner pans? I bought a wagner ware #8, its round and deep without spouts on the sides but the lid is smooth on top and underneath it has the griswold symbol and says 8 self basting. Did they come from two different pans?

Greg said...

wreif - They are probably from different pans.

In the 1960s and 70s some pieces were stamped with both logos but they aren't very nice. The decline was in full effect by that time.

Destiny said...

Hi there! I have long ago thrown out all my teflon pans and cook soley in cast iron. Love it! I used one of my cast iron skillets to cover some eggs to melt the cheese and for the first time noticed the markings on the bottom of the pan. It reads Wagner are Sidney -0- at the 12o'clock, has 5C at the 6 o'clock and has a heat ring, with no markings at the thumb rest but at the backside of the thumb area on the handle is a ridge. I wonder if you could help me figure out when it was made. I think this pan came from my Great Grandmother.

Kilted Lon said...

Hey, Dude! I found a big cast iron skillet in a junk shop here in Tucson, and bought it for $5. It was so thoroughly caked in gunk that that was all I could tell about it. It was shiny, black, and about 1/4" thick inside and out, even on the handle. I boiled water in it to soften the stuff inside, and after months of work with a scraper and wire brush, I found out that it was a #10 Wagner Ware -O- 1060c. The build-up was so bad, I couldn't even see the heat ring. So, from what I've read here, it seems I have a 1922-34 skillet that is totally amazing for everything I cook in it! I use a glass lid from another skillet on it, and even though it doesn't cover the spouts, I've had success with all my dishes! I guess I'm going back to the junk shops in search of a lid or more pans!
Awesome site, my friend!
Lon

Greg said...

Destiny - Based on your description I'd say late 1920s. Take care of that one!

Kilted Lon - Glad to hear it and a sweet #10 is a great thing to have.

Anonymous said...

I just picked up a Wagner Ware 1129 V for $10. I'm calling it a grill pan, but I'm not sure if that's the correct term. Google found your blog when I searched for the company name, and I'm learning a lot pretty quickly. Thanks for doing all of this.

Can you give me a little insight as to the date of my pan, and possibly point me toward some recipies for using it?


Thanks.

Matt Lacuesta said...

I grew up in Sidney, OH and was never able to find anyone willing to part with any of their Wagner cast iron. I have traveled a lot and yet to find any Wagner at any thrift stores. Any ideas on places to look other than flea markets and thrift stores? Ebay is okay, but I would like to hold it in my hands and check it out before buying. Also, great info on your blog. Thanks.

JoeyJoJo said...

Hi I just purchased a well worn Wagner pan at an antique shop for $16.00 with the following designations on the bottom.Just wondering if I got a good deal.

When flipped over, Up top it says:
WAGNER
WARE
SIDNEY
-O-

and toward the bottom is says:
1058
-

I've seen mention of 1058T and 1058M, but no mention of anythign labeled 1058- (dash) Any clue?
it also has an 8 on the top of the handle if that helps,

Any info you can provide would be great!
Thanks,

(p.s. I can provide pictures for reference if needed.)

Greg said...

Anonymous - The "Blue Book" calls the 1129V an "Angus Broiler" and lists the era as 1960s-1970s.

Matt - I've bought a couple pieces of WW at flea markets. I suppose people in Sidney are sentimental towards the Wagner items.

Yard sales are always a good source.

JoeyJoJo - 1058 is the model number. The letter doen't signify much beyond the series.

16 dollars is fine depending on condition. If you just want a good piece to use (& you should use it) you got a great deal because you'll never wear it out.

YourPalJoeyJoJo said...

Thanks for the info! My wife is really the cook in our house, she's excited because this is her 1st Cast Iron! She runs a website (DietItUp.Com) Where she takes recipes and makes them healthier, I'm sure we'll be putting it to good use!

Anonymous said...

I use an cast iron skillet everyday, love it. I recently bought a shallow skillet at a garage sale. When I got it home and cleaned up I found that it was Wagner. I can not find any info on it and I am curious about it. The handle is unusual, it has 3 holes cast into it.

On the bottom is;
Wagner Ware
Sidney
O
Shallow Skillet
9

So you have any info on it.
Thanks, Sue

JJenkins said...

Thanks for your great blog. I am just starting my first clean up on a Wagner Ware Sidney -0-, 1268A, dutch over. It is about clean, however, the bottom (inside) is very rough. I wouldn't consider it pitted, just rough. Is this normal? It came with a glass lid, assuming this is not the correct one. What lid would go with it? cast iron? Thanks

Greg said...

Sue - Those were produced between 1900 and 1920. They are worth well over $100.00 in great shape.

JJenkins - The later Wagner Ware Dutch Ovens had glass lids. They were also rougher in finish.

M@jorAppliance said...

I am looking for some information on Wagner ware that I just purchased. It's a little different from any that I have seen online thus far. I have two pans. Both have the Wagner Ware Sidney -O- logo. One is stamped 1056J and the other is stamped 1058X. The former has a 6 stamped on the handle and the latter has an 8. What makes them different is that they are coated with a gray/blue porcelain enamel. I haven't seen any pictures of enameled WW except for tiny promotional ashtrays you see on Ebay. Both pans could be brand new by looking at them. No chips and very little sign of ware. Any ideas on how old they are and value if any? Thanks for this blog by the way. Good stuff!

Greg said...

M@jorAppliance - I don't have any info on those skillets.

Wagner Ware did produce some enameled pieces but my books don't elaborate very much on them.

I would post some photos on the Wagner and Griswold Society forum and see what you find.

patti said...

I have not been a collector, but I have always desired a good Cast Iron skillet for cooking. I recently bought a really old one from a little shop in Waterford, WI.
It was well seasoned on the inside but heavily rusted and flaking on the outside. you couldn't make out any markings on the back, so I think the store owners thought it was just a junk pan.I got it home and cleaned it. I found that it was a "WAGNER", Sidney, O and on the lower bottom it says 8 E. It looks just like the pan you have as an example of an old piece.It is now beautifully seasoned with no rust, pitting or sratches. I was wondering when this piece was made and what it was worth.

Greg said...

patti - I'm travelling so I can't look at my reference books but I can say it was cast before the mid 1920s.

Value? I'd look for similar pans on eBay (in similar condition) and see what they sell for. I'd guess between 50 and 100 dollars.

amanda098 said...

I have a question. I have an old cast iron skillet I inherited from my grandmother. It was possibly even from my great grandmother. It looks like a traditional cast iron skillet, all smooth, loop handle. The problem is that I can't find any markings on it whatsoever. Any ideas on why this might be?

thanks!

Anonymous said...

Hi Greg,
My name is Julie and my Grandfather just gave me a Wagner Ware Sidney 0 with 1120 V on the back. The Wagner Ware stamp is different from your above photos, the W is shared for both Wagner and Ware. It looks pretty old and is in AWESOME condition. It appears to have grill lines in the bottom to cook bacon in or something. I would love nothing more than to learn of a possible year this was cast. It was his Mother's and he wanted someone in the family to have it. I am honored and very excited!!! Any information would be awesome. I appreciate it! :) Thank you very much and your blog is amazing! I love it!

Anonymous said...

Hello! I am hoping someone here (either the blog owner or a reader). My wife and I have a favorite cast iron skillet that an auction-frequenting friend gave us. We absolutely love it, as it is perfectly seasoned. We care for as if it were a baby; lovingly rubbing oil into it after every use, and NEVER using soap on it. My question is regarding its age, purely out of curiosity, as we are not interested in selling it. The bottom is stamped: "Wagner", Sidney, O, 9D. Commas represent a new line. It has a slight ridge around the outside bottom that I believe is called a "heat ring". Can anyone tell us approximately when it was made?

Thank you!
Sam

Greg said...

Sam - Your answer is found in the post.

Mark said...

Greg,

Thanks for the blog and all the help. I'm back. I came across three old rusty pieces and picked them up for little to nothing. I got them home and started working, or rather let the electricity start working. The first on was an unmarked deep frying pan with a fire ring, turned out great, the second is turning out to be a Wagner Ware Sydney -o- 1058 (couldn't tell anything with all the rust and crud) the third is a skillet lid. Looks to be old and well used. It turned out okay but the only marking on it is a "T" on the underside in the spikes. It has a dimpled top. Any ideas as to the manufacturer?

Anonymous said...

Sorry, couldn't find a listing for a 9D in the post, although you said anything with "wagner" is pre-1922. I really was hoping for a more exact date, but i guess maybe one can't be sure?
Thanks for your reply :)
Sam

Greg said...

Sam - With old Wagners it is usually impossible to get closer than 10-15 years unless you have characteristics of two "eras" and those are transition pieces that can be nailed down better.

Lodge is even harder to date because they never kept records of their changes.


Mark - Spikes on the underside of the lid make me think it is a Lodge or Birmingham Stove and Range.

The dimpling is called a hammered finish and lots of foundries did this from time to time.

Anonymous said...

Hi Greg,
Your site is terrific! My family is originally from Troy, near Sidney and I inherited a filthy old Wagner Ware skillet that may have been in my mom's basement for decades. I'm excited to start reconditioning it this weekend following your instructions. I'm curious how old it may be and was hoping you could help. It says Wagner Ware Sidney -O- at the 12:00 position, 8 at the 6:00 position and there is also a J stamped near the middle. I think it has what you call a heat ring. Anyway, I'm curious about how far back my family was cooking on this skillet!
Thanks,
Jenn

Anonymous said...

After discharge from USMC in early '67 I was engaged...each week I bought a piece of cast iron at an old h'ware. store in Concord, NH - #3,5,8,10, c'kn. fryer & #8 griddle. The display was a Griswold and I'm sure the paper inserts read likewise.The pans are not marked other than the no.s . I still have and use them... (the 'ex' is long gone). Anyone recall a similar display? I wish I'd saved those inserts. Rick

S.Face said...

Greg,Good blog,I have a wagner wear griddle 10" across the top,It has the stylized "W" for both words,Sidney -o-..1109 D And looks like Black Glass,I love it.Worth anything? and when was it made.Second,I have a skillet 10" across the top but,has a large 7 AT THE 12 O`CLOCK then SK under that than 8-B under that with MADE IN THE U.S.A In the middle of the pan,and finaly 02.This pan is very heavy and is also Black Glass.Any Ideas where this is from.S.Face

Anonymous said...

Greg,

From my grandmother, I just got a #7

WAGNER
WARE
SIDNEY
-O-

and center bottom is says:
1057 B

Just curious when it was made?

A comment, I have the Wagner 1881 series which I actually like to cook with and I really like the handles.

Mike

Anonymous said...

Greg,

I have more information,.. on the previous post, Wagner Ware Sidney O is centered on the bottom and the has a heat ring as well...

Mike

Jennifer said...

I just found your blog after spending days/weeks months searching for a drip drop roaster. My grandmother gave hers to my father who well doesnt want to share. Ive never used anything different and dont really know how to cook in anything else. I often search thrift stores and yard sales looking for cast iron pans as that is all I cook it. I have a decent collection but I will now be looking for wagner and wagner ware pans. I didnt know there was much of a differnce. My father has a few wagner pans--again these were my grandmothers. She got some for her parents and the rest from her wedding in the 1930s. I know know what to look for. If you have any leads on a roaster please pass it on. Ive been looking for years. That is the 1 piece I want to own and I dont want to wait for my father to pass it will be along time before that happens and I would love to make a roast of my own it one.

Anonymous said...

Hi, what great information! My husband is laughing at me digging out all our old cast iron.
Maybe you can help figure out some of these for me or point me in the right direction.
The first one is a Wagner Ware Sidney "O" 1270 Dutch oven, the lid has three or four patent dates around the inside edge, the last date is March 11 22 (1922 I assume) (I think that's the correct date as I'm not looking at it).
Then we have 4 Fry Pans:
10" in the center of the bottom there is a cicle that says "Lodge" USA 8SK.
8 3/4" has no name but has a heat ring on the bottom outside edge and it is split in 3 sections (hope that made since) there is also a 6 & sk on the bottom.
9 1/2" has no name, there is an 8 on the handle. The handle has a very wide shank and smaller loop opening, also the underside of the handle is v shaped.
6" has no name, the bottom has an outside heat ring and 3 B stamped on it. The handle has the same v shape on the bottom as mentioned above.
I almost forgot one of the more unique pieces! A pot, narrower at the bottom, wider at the top, 3 cast feet, wire handle & lid. No name, a number 7 on the bottom of the pot, the lid has a number 7 and then 4 - 4, the lid also has little pointy nubs on the inside. :) My grandmother called it a "polenta" pot, not the technical name I'm sure.

Thanks so much for your time!
Cathy

Anonymous said...

I know an old man that has a small trailer full of cast iron skillets and dutch ovens. They are in many different conditions but the majority of the pans will need to be cleaned and re-seasoned. My question is this, how bad of shape can a cast iron pan be in and still bring it back into shape?

Thanks,

Robert

Toller said...

My son found a Wagner No. 8 Drip Drop Roaster.
Bottom says Wagner Ware Sidney 0, Round Roaster, 1268D.
Top says 1268B, Patented Dec. 4-17 Feb. 10-20 MCH. 8-21. MCH14-22
Only has light rust, which is great for being the woods for God knows how long.
What can you tell me about it?
Thanks.

lomophotography said...

Greg,

dou have any cast iron recipies for apple
crisp/ cobbler using a #8 or #9 griswold?

Love your blog! Really great information
thank you!

Seth
Seth.Affoumado@Gmail.com

Michael said...

BID,
any info on:
Wagner Ware
Sidney
-O-

Twin
Waffle
Iron

1421


thanks,
Mike

Greg said...

Jenn - 1920-1924 is the most likely date range.

Styles overlapped.

Rick - At least you have the iron!

S.Face - Those handled griddles were made for a long time. 1924-1970 Maybe 35 dollars so keep it because you won't find anything better to use.

The skillet is an unmarked one. I suspect either Lodge or Birmingham Stove and Range. Is there a heat ring? If there is describe it.

Mike - Mid 1920s to late 1930s. Because these items were hand cast a foundry man could show up one day hung over and just make a change. This is why dating is imprecise.

Jennifer - eBay always has some.

Cathy - They made Dutch Ovens from 1895 until they closed shop. The lids changed more than they ovens themselves.

The skillets that have SK in the name are probably Lodge.

If the heat ring has breaks at 12 o clock or 9, 12 and 3 o'clock it is another hint that they may be Lodge.

I'd need pictures to guess about the other pieces you mention.

Robert - Pretty terrible as long as they aren't cracked or pitted with rust.

See this http://curiouskai.blogspot.com/2009/12/reconditioning-cast-iron-frying-pan.html

Toller - Look here http://blackirondude.blogspot.com/2009/03/old-wagner-ware-dutch-ovens.html#uds-search-results

Seth - I think I'd take one for a 9 x 13" pan and divide it between 2 skillets. I haven't done this myself.

Greg said...

Mike - That twin waffle iron is pretty rare and if it is in good shape should be worth approx. 500 dollars.

Kayla said...

Hey there, great blog you've got! My grandmother just gave me a skillet she hasn't used in a while, just wondering if you've any information on it!

WAGNER
Sidney.Ohio.USA

9.5in./24cm
A 6-97

Thank you, and keep up the great work! :)

Cole said...

I love your blog. The information is great. I work as a caregiver for seniors (some 100 yrs old) and sometimes come across interesting pieces. I just saw my first chromed piece (cool to look at) it is in bad shape with thick black crusty stuff covering most of the chrome. My question though is this, is it safe to eat food cooked in the chromed stuff ie no bad stuff in your food from the chrome?

Greg said...

Kayla - I haven't seen any pieces with metric measurements (except the picture in the post) but I suspect it has to be fairly recent.

Cole - I really don't know the answer to that question. I only have 1 chrome finished piece and the cooking surface is normal cast iron.

Anonymous said...

Hi! So glad I've found your site. I am curious about an old Dutch Oven that I use and love frequently. It was orginally my great aunt's, then my grandmother's, then my mother's and now mine. It is very heavy duty. It is aluminum looking. The bottom is completely smooth with "Wagner Ware Sidney 0 Magnalite 1248-M" on the bottom. The heavy duty lid is the orignal as well. Any information would be appreciated.
Thanks,
A.

Anonymous said...

I just purchased a cast iron skillet at an antique shop (to use, not to collect - didn't pay much). I can't find the "brand" anywhere on the internet but I wonder if it could be a Wagner precursor. The bottom just says "Sidney" (in quotes) about in the middle prependicular to the loop handle. Below it (closer to the handle) is the number 10 - no other markings. It has a heat ring and a beautiful smooth finish similar to my old Wagners and Griswolds. Any information would be appreciated. Thanks

Anonymous said...

I have 2 cast iron pieces I saved from certain destruction. I can not find any info on them. The first is a Wagner Ware Sydney -O- with the numbers 1129 V by the handle on the bottom. There is also a v on the handle. This skillet has raised ribs in the cooking area, What are they please.

The 2nd is a poy with a hanging handle and a grabbing handle. Same Wagner ware logo with the numbers 1265 on the bottom. I want to clean them up and season them. I have no clue what the skillet is for though. I thought maybe for searing steaks.

Any info is greatly appreciated.

Anonymous said...

I suspect I may have bought a fake/reproduction Wagner Ware Sidney O skillet from ebay. Do you have any advice for how I can know for sure before sending it back?

Dee and Martin said...

Greetings,

I just finished rescuing a Wagner Ware 1057. Derusted and seasoned mulitple times with flax seed oil. It looks great now. Wondered if you could tell me more about the pan? It has the Wagner ware Sidney in the middle of the pan with an - o- underneath it and a 1057 below that. It does have a heat ring.

Thanks and great site it is one of my foodie bookmarks!

Thanks

mary said...

i have a wagner skillet marked as made in sidney, o-it also has a no. 10 near the bottom- this belonged to my grandmother who died a few years before i was born-i am over 70