Friday, September 6, 2013

Cast Iron Collector Corner: MARTIN DUTCH OVEN

Martin Dutch Oven Top Lid
This is for all the cast iron collectors out there.  I picked this up at an Estate sale and quite frankly never heard of a Martin Dutch Oven until now.  With a little TLC and a few new coats of seasoning, this will be a beautiful black beauty.
My pieces are always put to use and not just sitting on a shelf.

Martin Dutch Oven Bottom Logo-Pot has no legs, no heat ring
I am hoping that someone out there is knowledgeable on this particular piece and would be kind enough to post comments or email me.  Please email to  or post a comment below this article through the comment link (just left of the little yellow pencil icon).  Any or all info is appreciated.  I will keep editing this article with all new info and post the contributor.  The red font below is from people passing on what they know.  We hope this article helps some other collector, or cast iron curious, in the future.  I am trying to find out the year it was manufactured, history and probable worth?

Also let us know if you enjoy articles such as this subject and we will keep them coming!  Thank You! 

Also see our other Cast Iron Collector posts:

Updates and knowledge sent in by others

The Company made wonderful iron, especially when they were marking it nicely. The pot shown here in this article is one of the nicest Dutch ovens I have seen.  c. 1920?  
Steve Stevens, Griswold & Cast Iron Cookware Association.

Martin Stove & Range Co
1905- The two brothers W.H Martin  and Charles Martin founded King Stove & Range Co in Sheffield, AL.  They made coal and wood heaters, cooking stoves, and ranges.
1918 - The Martins purchase a failing foundry just across the river from Sheffield, AL. They acquired this business and incorporated it as Martin Stove and Range Co, a separate business from King Stove and Range. In addition to making coal and wood stoves, they produced hollowware, iron skillets, and clothes pressing irons known as "sad" irons.
1939 - The Martins expanded their holdings.  They bid on machinery of a bankrupted manufacturing plant in Huntsville, AL. They won the bid and created their third business, Martin Stamping and Stove Co.  This company started producing gas heaters.
1941-1976 - During World War II both of Martins foundries manufactured magazine heaters for the Army.  The Martins Stamping facility made bomb crates and some other items.  At the end of the war they returned to making gas, wood, and coal heating units.  They added electrical in the 1950's.  Demand for electric heaters increased.  They opened a new plant in Athens, AL in 1966.  Also located in Athens, the Marin Fireplace division. This business grew thanks to the Marin Firecones (1966) and zero-clearance Fireplaces (1970)
1974 - The three Martin holdings companies merged into Martin Industries Inc.
1977-90 - Martin expands.  The Sheffield Plant discontinues foundry operations and converts to stamping and fabrication.  The Florence Plant was retooled into a highly automated foundry.  In the late 70's they needed additional space and purchased a plant in Americus, GA. and started producing its Ashley heaters.  They continued to expand and acquired additional business including a Canadian company.
1997-2001 The Company faces tough times.  Their net losses in 1998 reach $3.5 million, jumping to $6.2 the next year.  In 2000 they reported a loss of $24.6 million.  This was attributed to their inability to manufacture and ship hearth products on time due to problems encountered when they put in place a new distribution system.  Sales plummeted.  Many cost cutting measures were implemented.  Their chances of becoming profitable again is strong.
They currently compete against BBQ's Galore, Lennox, and Weber, to name a few.


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