Let's Talk Rusty Iron

You've Come a Long Way, Baby

Above: A gasoline-burning iron for those without electricity. Flat irons, often called sad irons, came in sets of three. While one was being used, the other two were heating on top of the stove. There was usually a single handle that could be easily attached and detached from the iron bases. (Montgomery Ward & Co. catalog, Winter 1930-31.)Below: A new, shiny Wardway Gyrator electric washing machine from the Winter, 1930-31 Montgomery Ward & Co. catalog. The machine had an “improved agitator” and a “lifetime copper tub.” Expensive at $74.50, the Wardway could be bought for $5 down and $7.50 a month.