Collecting, cleaning, displaying, researching, and appreciating TRIVETS and related go-withs!
In May 2021, finally fully vaccinated against Covid, my husband Ed and I took a long awaited 18 day road trip to visit family. We drove from Florida to Tennessee to Wisconsin and back again, a roundtrip of 2,712 miles. Now in our late 60s, we’ve learned the importance of stopping periodically to get out of the car and stretch. So in addition to the usual interstate rest stops, I convinced Ed to include a few antique malls along the way.
It’s disappointing that few “antique” malls in America specialize in older collectibles anymore. Instead, they’re packed with vintage collectibles, refurbished decorator pieces and cheap imports. Nevertheless, strolling up and down the aisles provided nice breaks from riding in an automobile.
Of all the antique malls we visited the Exit 76 Antique Mall in Edinburgh, Indiana was my favorite. Billed as “The Finest in the Midwest”, it didn’t disappoint! Before long I spotted this near mint set of Asbestos sad irons: two bases with shiny sole plates and one hood, with the asbestos liner intact, properly inscribed PAT. MAY 22nd, 1900. The dealer was asking $95, more than I was willing to pay, so I left it behind and we resumed driving north along I-65 towards Wisconsin.
Of course I couldn’t get these irons out of my mind so, on the way home, we stopped in Edinburgh and I ran into the mall. Would they still be there? Yes! The seller’s price was firm but I purchased them anyway, since it’s so unusual to find nickel plated pressing irons in this condition.
These two bases differ from the more commonly encountered double pointed Asbestos iron cores.
● Left: a flounce (sleeve) iron measuring 6 3/4″ long with a long pointed end.
● Right: a square-heeled presser measuring 5″ in length.
If you’d like to see these two irons within a complete Asbestos set, view this mint condition Asbestos Family Cabinet set archived at the National Museum of American History in Washington, DC.