Where's the microwave?

April 21, 2019

Coal Stove
James Spear Stove and Heating Company
Date: 1898

At the end of the 19th century, the Industrial Revolution helped popularize the cast iron ranges which would dominate Victorian kitchens. Changing mining technology also made coal more readily available.


Despite its ability to cook foods faster and more evenly, the cast iron range demanded constant cleaning and attention. The ashes had to be raked out, the cinders (unburnt coal) had to be separated, and the flues had to be cleaned, just to name a few chores.


This stove is original to the house. According to Dr. H. Sydney Newcomer, who owned the Physick House in the 1950s and ‘60s, his wife wanted to remove the stove but it was too heavy. She then painted it pink and put potted plants on the stove.