Kitchens have always interested me, even as a child. I can vividly recall my great-grandmother’s kitchen in her house in Brooklyn. She had an old, wall-mounted sink, a wringer washing machine, a free-standing old cast iron stove and a cupboard for storage – all lined up against the far wall. A small refrigerator was standing between 2 windows by the sink and, of course, the multi-task table in the center. That was it!
Everyone would gather in the kitchen for cooking, meeting for coffee, just chatting and visiting. She would have really loved to make her homemade pizza in one of these kitchens.
The sink seems to be top mount, stainless steel in the countertop and the stove has a smooth top. I wonder if this is authentic! I don’t see any venting over the cooking surface. The full tile backsplash and tray base storage are items we incorporate in every kitchen today, in addition to tiling up to a shelf above the range.
This kitchen doesn’t have any work space so I guess they provided the stack tables on the right side to give the space some function. Note the open area under the sink where they stored the garbage can. Little did they realize that it was set up for a wheelchair. The built-in storage areas and tray space give it a cute touch, in addition to some much needed storage.
This kitchen has more counter area for food preparation and a separate eating area with built-in storage. Notice the old telephone on the “telephone table with a shelf for the phone book. The clock in each kitchen has a prominent location. Today every appliance has an LED panel with a clock/timer, so wall clocks are not needed.
Finally! The dishwasher was becoming a hot item in the 50’s. American Kitchens made a “Roto-Tray” dishwasher where the upper rack rotated through “steaming, swirling sprays of super-hot water getting them 3 times cleaner than washing by hand.” Looks like the corner lazy susan was included in this kitchen.
Creativity and function was starting to flow in this kitchen. The framed, wood cabinet doors were bringing in a whole new look and feel. The cantilevered desk area with the wall phone (how cute?) was incorporated in the kitchen so the shopping list and recipe storage was efficient.
1955 St. Charles Kitchen
Prior to 1953, steel cabinets were available only in white. St. Charles, launched in 1935, introduced pastel colors to their steel cabinet line. Until 2006 when they went out of business, St. Charles cabinets were still made in the original factory in St. Charles, Illinois. Take note of the built-in refrigerator, wall ovens and double-bowl stainless steel sink.