Thursday, January 19, 2012

I Love, Love, Love Kitchens --Continued

Other than the 4 walls, cabinetry, ceiling and floor, the most important things in a kitchen are the big 3: Stove, Sink, and Refrigerator!

Without these things, you might as well not call it a kitchen at all. So it was very important to me to find the very best stove possible for my money. Since I am far from rich, but I had champagne tastes I decided to buy a used stove. Used but not abused, and far from cheap!

I ended up buying a Crown American 1980s gas range. It is white with six burners, two full sized ovens, and two broilers. I bought it for $1,500 and paid another $700 to have it shipped to Kansas from the restorer I bought it from in California.  Martha Stewart's head chef has one just like it only in black.  It created quite a stir when it arrived at my movers.

He freaked out and wanted to buy it, my cousin came along and went apes for it, but the best reaction was from my buddy Mixfinder.   "Leo is very fortunate to have the Crown double oven, gas range, made in the days when kitchens cranked out three meals a day and big dinners on Sunday.  They should hire a few of us hardcore appliance sleuths to work for the CIA. We'd root out the answers in no time. Leo has a gift for finding the unobtainable and a nose for a bargain. My Appalachian grandpa would always warn us "watch out for the Gypsies" and to prove the point, kept his billfold in his shirt pocket secured by a huge safety pin. I never knew what a gypsy was or what it was I was looking out for, but when it comes to all things Kitchen and Leo, better put a safety pin on your wallet. She can find anything!"

model : 849-246kgoe
I found this information online about Crown ranges:

"The Nearly Full Story of American Crown Range
Brian J McLaughlin
Sr. Territory Manager
Mid-Atlantic Region
Miele Inc.

Back in the late 70's and early 80's, I sold a Gas Range line called Crown Stove Works. They were originally manufactured in Cicero Ill. Yes they did make 40" Gas Double oven, double broiler, with 4 or 6 burners. Each burner did offer a small three point "star"; burner in the center for simmering. The 40"; range sold real well in Black with Nickel Chrome Burner bowls.(Model # 845-242AKGOE). Crown was unique for producing their ranges per order. They were hand assembled and to some extent customizable by the consumers. Unlike many manufactures at that time, they used electronic Spark Ignition for the ovens instead of Glow Coils Ignitors too. Sometime in the 80's they were sold and moved. They had a tremendous accident which brought the factory assembly area down to the ground and eventually out of business.

Crown Stove Works of Cicero IL was founded by William Rogers and was family owned.

From a Chicago paper:
Rogers, John "Jack" C. of Downers Grove, formerly of River Forest, passed away Saturday, September 8, peacefully at his home after a long courageous battle with cancer. Born September 4th, 1922 in Oak Park, Illinois. He was the son of the late Clarence and Bernadette Rogers,

John was a graduate of Fenwick High School in 1941 and attended both St. Benedict College and the University of Notre Dame, was a proud Veteran of World War II, and the former owner of Crown Stove Works of Cicero.

Sadly...he died -this- last September 2007."

When I was a kid, my parent's kitchen had one of those old metal Youngstown sink cabinets with an integrated drain on either side of the single bowl sink.  As I got older, I appreciated how those built in drainboards made cleaning a breeze.  The only thing I hated was the fact there wasn't a double bowl configuration. 

So when I was helping out at a local church, and they told me they were throwing out this old cast iron double bowl sink top with drainboards on either side I rejoiced!  I could have found one online, but shipping it would have been outrageous.  The church even decided to deliver it to my home! 

I even found a fascinating old design faucet for my sink.  I chose the Dishmaster faucet!  I found a brand new one on Ebay, and I think it is perfect for how I clean in the kitchen.

I am a lot more flexible when it comes to refrigerators than I am with ranges and sinks.  But I would LOVE to have a refurbished one of these beauties but alas, that will probably not happen.

What I actually have in my kitchen is a 20 year old black Kenmore refrigerator and since it works perfectly, I will keep it.  When life sends you lemons, make lemonade!

And to keep it company is my perfectly adequate black Kenmore dishwasher.

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