Collecting, cleaning, displaying, researching, and appreciating TRIVETS and related go-withs!
● Antiques of a Mechanical Nature is the website of Carole & Larry Meeker of California. Beyond items for sale, they share a tremendous amount of archived information of interest to collectors. Their Past Sales/Archive contains information and images on hundreds of antique irons, trivets and other laundry related items.
● Lee Maxwell’s Washing Machine Museum in Colorado is in the Guinness Book of Records. Maxwell is the author of the book “Save Women’s Lives ~ History of Washing Machines”. Watch a tour video of the museum!
● The Museum of Romanian Records is located in Bucharest, Romania. It houses the world’s largest collections of trivets, pressing irons and corkscrews. Tours are available Monday through Sunday by reservation only.
● Pressing Iron and Trivet Collectors of America shares information on irons, trivets and other laundry collectibles and is adding new information yearly.
● The Variety House at the Shelburne Museum in Shelburne, Vermont was bequeathed the 2100+ piece William Paley Trivet Collection on his death. Over 200 of the finest trivets from that collection compose the largest display of its kind in the United States. Many of Paley’s Early American trivets appear in the book A Collector’s Guide To Trivets & Stands (1990).
Nothing compares to a physical reference book when researching antiques and collectibles! I access my library frequently and display my reference books and catalogs alongside my collectibles.
You’ll find information on my two trivet books on a different page.
The following resources are my favorites. Although the majority are older and out of print, most titles are still available online in the resale market at a reasonable price. They are worth adding to your reference library because they provide information sometimes otherwise unavailable.
● Berney,Esther: A Collector’s Guide To Pressing Irons & Trivets (1977). It’s helpful to see irons and their companion trivets together. There is an entire chapter devoted entirely to trivets.
● Dechant, Alliene Saeger: Seed Time To Harvest (1957). This is John Zimmerman Harner’s autobiography, as told to Dechant. A very interesting book!
● Deeley, Robert with Andrew Crawforth & David Pearsall: The Cauldron, The Spit & The Fire (2011). This gorgeous book illustrates how our ancestors lived with and used the wrought iron and cast metal items we collect. Includes several pages illustrating 18th and 19th century trivets and footmen.
● Geisert, Jim & Robin: Tuesday’s Reflections: A 30-Year Perspective (2007). This is a beautifully photographed, self-published softbound catalog of the little irons and trivets in their collection. It makes a nice modern complement to the Politzer books., but can be hard to find. Note: PITCA members can check out a copy through our Lending Library!
● Glissman, A. H.: The Evolution of the Sad Iron (1970). This is considered the first definitive text on pressing irons.
● Hankenson, Dick: Trivets Book 1 and Trivets Book 2 (1972). Dick Hankenson’s books were the first pertaining exclusively to trivets. They were well received, finally giving collectors and dealers the information they needed to identify and describe trivets. It appears Hankenson assigned named to many of his trivets, and collectors continue to use those terms. Although much of the information is outdated by today’s standards, the author’s love of trivets is obvious. Keep in mind also that Hankenson’s definition of “rare” was pre-internet.
● Irons, David: Irons By Irons (1994), More Irons By Irons (1997) and Even More Irons By Irons (2000). This three book series will answer any question you will ever have about a pressing iron. Available from the author.
● Kelly, Rob Roy and Ellwood, James: A Collector’s Guide To Trivets & Stands (1990). Often referred to as the trivet collector’s bible, with good reason! This book contains information on foundries and casting, trivet makers and distributors, trivet designs, and how to date a trivet. There are nearly thirteen hundred trivets pictured, along with notes on dimensions, markings, availability, and value. It’s a must for every trivet collector!
● Mitchell, Hazel: British Iron Stands (1991). This spiral bound book was assembled for the 8th International Congress of Iron Collectors. Only 100 numbered copies of this work were published; finding a copy can be challenging.
● Politzer, Judy: Tuesday’s Children (1977) and Early Tuesday Morning (1986). Politzer’s two books are packed with information on toy-sized irons and their matching trivets. The sole-plate of each iron is traced to assist in identification.
● Raymond, Jay: Mangle Boards of Northern Europe (2015). This is the long awaited, definitive text on mangle boards, featuring 267 boards presented in full color in a beautiful 12″ x 15″ coffee-table sized book.
● Slesin, Suzanne and Rozensztroch, Daniel: Everyday Things Wire (1994). If you have any wireware in your collection you definitely need this reference book. The history of wireware is discussed and both trivets and sadiron stands are illustrated.