Learn to date and identify your Griswold cast iron.
If you have a Griswold cast iron skillet that has been hiding in the back of your kitchen cupboard. Then it is time to bring it out, dust it off, and start using these vintage pans. People really enjoy and treasure these old skillets, including myself.
In this article, you can learn to date and identify your Griswold cast iron using markings. And also by the different logos and brands, Selden & Griswold and Griswold Manufacturing Company used between 1873-1957.
Table of contents
- Selden & Griswold cast iron
- Erie cast iron
- Griswold cast iron skillet logos
- Victor cast iron
- Iron Mountain
- Good Health cast iron
- Best Made skillets
- Puritan cast iron
- Merit cast iron
Griswold Manufacturing background
The origins of Griswold Manufacturing Company dates back to 1868 as a small operation making door hinges.
Selden & Griswold Manufacturing Company
|The Selden and Griswold family business becomes the Selden & Griswold Manufacturing company.|
Griswold Manufacturing Company
The company grew to become one of America’s largest and most respected cast-iron manufacturers of the 20th century.
Reasons for collectibility
Griswold cast iron skillets are highly regarded and sought after because of their smooth cooking surfaces and lighter weight.
Desired and rare skillets
Keep an eye out for the first series of Erie and Erie Spider skillets. These two skillets stand out as the most sought-after by collectors.
Also, rare sizes such the Griswold #13 and #20 are prized by collectors and enthusiasts.
|Most valuable Griswold skillet|
The Erie Spider and Griswold no13 can cost a pretty penny.
But the most valuable Griswold skillet is your family skillet.
Family skillets vary in size, condition and have various logos. However, they are the most treasured and are often regarded as priceless.
Helpful articles for further reading.
Once you have finished reading this article, I have written beginner’s guides to Griswold skillets. To help noncollectors use, and enjoy their Griswold ironware.
- Should I buy a Griswold cast iron skillet?
- Where are the best places to buy Griswold ironware as a novice?
- How to spot faults in the skillet to avoid overpaying?
- Is my antique skillet worth anything?
Disclaimer: I have tried my best to keep the information as accurate as possible by carefully researching. I have also collected cast iron for over 10 years, so I have some experience behind me. But dates vary between sources, and factors such as handle design can slightly change the date of manufacture.
However, I have spent many hours creating this identification guide. And I hope you find it helpful and informative.
Selden & Griswold cast iron 1873-1884
Matthew Griswold and two brothers from the Selden teamed up and started to make door hinges in 1868. Their factory was known as the Butt Factory, named after the door hinge (butt hinge) manufactured in the casting works.
Selden & Griswold started to manufacture hollowware in 1873. But most of the cookware with this logo was probably made in the 1880s. Even though Mathew Griswold bought out the company in 1884, he still used the Selden Griswold logos.
After all, it would have taken a lot of time and money to register new patent designs. And to make new molds. Check out our other article to learn about the history of Griswold Manufacturing. Wikipedia also has some information on Griswold. Although I hope my article is a little more detailed.
How old is my Griswold cast iron skillet? Logo approximate dates
|Made around 1880-1907|
(Griswold diamond logo)
A new logo was introduced called circle cross.
With heat ring circa 1906-1916
Slant logo with EPU
Slant logo without Erie
No Erie under logo circa 1909-1920
Griswold with large block logo
Without italic lettering 1920-1930
Large block logo
(without heat ring)
Griswold large slant logo
(without heat ring)
Small block logo
|Notable reduction in logo size. Circa 1939-1957|
Erie cast iron (approximation date 1880-1907)
Erie cast iron is some of the most sought-after vintage cast iron you can collect. Griswold used this logo between 1880-1907.
Erie cast iron skillets are very thin and light. Because of this, they are more prone to warping. So if you are buying an Erie online, make sure you ask the seller if the skillet rocks or spins. That being said, I would not look past an Erie skillet just because it has a little movement.
Erie skillets are also known to be super smooth and are often priced similar to other vintage pans.
If you have an Erie skillet, you can further break the Erie logo into 6 different variations. The Wagner and Griswold Society has an article on the markings and variations of the Erie skillets.
If you look at the back of your cast iron Griddle, and you see a diamond logo. Then it is your lucky day. The Griswold Diamond logo is an early logo, and it is more scarce than other logos.
Griswold manufactured griddles with this logo Circa 1884-1910. The logo is positioned in the center. Unfortunately, this is an area on cast iron often damaged by sulfur pitting.
Griswold’s Erie Trademark
Griswold used this logo somewhere between 1905-1909. There are conflicting dates, so I used a conservative timeline. Since Griswold used the Griswold’s Erie logo for a short time, it is harder to find skillets with this logo.
The Griswold’s Erie logo is the first Griswold logo. It transitions from previously used Erie logos to Griswold logos. However, the Griswold’s Erie logo shares similarities which Erie skillets.
Look for Griswolds’s Erie skillets between sizes 6-9 and 11 to 12.
Griswold Slant logo with heat ring no EPU.
The first of the famous Griswold skillet logos. The Griswold Manufacturing company used the Slant trademark from 1906-1916. Again this is a wide conservative range.
The Griswold slant logo is easy to recognize with the word Griswold which is in italics. Also, the Slant logo has characteristics that differ from Erie and Griswold’s Erie skillets.
Changes Griswold made on their Slant logo skillets.
- The size number on the base of the skillet moved from the 6 o’clock to 12 o’clock position.
- Erie is placed below the Griswold logo. From 1880-1907 the word Erie is placed at 12 o’clock.
- The pattern number moved from the center of the skillet to 6 o’clock on the skillet to make room for the Griswold circle cross logo.
Griswold Slant logo sizes
Slant logo sizes range from 1-14. The largest skillet with the Griswold Slant logo is #14. A Griswold #13 slant logo can cost thousands of dollars to the serious collector. Needless to say, the skillet has to be in excellent condition to achieve this price.
Griswold slant logo with E.P.U and heat ring
The Griswold slant trademark changed to add the words cast iron skillet in an arc at 12 o’clock on the skillet. The EPU is in reference to the wording Erie PA., U.S.A., on the skillet.
The slant logo, however, remained the same. Again I cannot pinpoint the exact date of manufacture of the Griswold slant logo with EPU. If you have a Griswold slant logo with EPU the manufacture date is around 1909-1929.
Slant logo without Erie marking
I have only seen this trademark used on a few Griswold cast iron skillets. It seems to be quite rare. The logo is the same as the Slant logo without the EPU marking. And, this logo also omits the marking Erie.
Griswold cast iron skillets without Erie marking had a manufacture date around 1909 to 1920.
Sizes available: I have only seen the large slant logo without Erie on size #9 skillets. I do not know of other skillet sizes that came with this logo.
Large block logo (with heat ring)
One of the more popular markings or trademarks. And is known as the Griswold block logo. The block logo is very similar to the Slant logo. However, the word Griswold is no longer in italics. Griswold is in straight block lettering.
Skillets with the block logo probably were made between 1920-1930. Griswold also manufactured a wide of sizes ranging from 0-14. However, Griswold Manufacturing also made a number 20.
The Griswold #20 is a massive skillet and can cost a pretty penny online. And it is called the Griswold Hotel skillet.
Large block logo without heat ring (smooth bottom)
Griswold also put the large block logo on cast iron skillets with a smooth bottom rather than the familiar heat ring. However, the sizes were more limited. Look out for sizes between 2-10 if you want to collect a complete set.
Smooth bottom skillets are not as desirable to collectors as skillets with heats rings. So you can expect to pay less for a Griswold without a heat ring.
Why the change? Cookware with heat rings was for use on wood or coal ranges. However, with the introduction of electric cookers, cast iron cookware with heat rings slowly gave way to cast iron skillets without heat rings.
So if you want an excellent old skillet without the price tag of highly collectible pieces. Then a skillet with Griswold Large Block trademark could be a great option.
Griswold made skillets with the large block logo and a flat bottom between 1930-1939.
Griswold slant logo without heat ring
Griswold also used the Slant logo on smooth bottom pans.
However, slant logos on skillets without a heat ring is not as common as skillets with a heat ring. These pieces seem to sell at a similar price to a smooth bottom Griswold with a block logo. Griswold made these skillets between 1939-1944.
Small block logo.
The Griswold Small Block marking is not as collectible to cast iron enthusiasts, but they are still fantastic skillets. Griswold drastically reduced the size of the logo, and skillets came without a heat ring. Skillets lost much of their character. But, there are some beautiful skillets around with the small block logo.
Watch out for sellers pricing these skillets at high prices. Because you can expect to pick up a skillet with the Griswold small block logo at a lower price than more collectible skillets.
Not the say the small block skillets are not any good. But the small block logo is simply not as collectible, so you may pick a good skillet at bargain prices.
The Small Block logo was made between 1939-1957.
If you have a skillet with the small block logo, check out this article. You will learn three different handle types to better estimate the age of your skillet.
Griswold Manufacturing’s big brands were Erie and Griswold. But they also made cast iron cookware under different brands.
Griswold like other foundries made a lower grade range of cast iron cookware. And was more budget-friendly.
Griswold Manufacturing’s budget-friendly line.
Circa 1890s to the 1930s.
Griswold Manufacturing Manufacturing a budget brand called Victor.
Victor was a budget-friendly line of cast iron. Griswold made Victor skillets between the 1890s to the 1930s. And the logo also changed over the 50 years. Simply marked in the beginning with Victor at the 12 o’clock position like Erie skillets. Later the logo on the cast iron skillets became embellished.
Griswold Manufacturing marketed Victor cast iron as a lower grade. But, this does not mean lower quality. But the skillets still have super smooth cooking surfaces.
If you have a piece of Victor ironware, I have written an identification guide to estimate the age of your pan. Click on the link to learn more.
Griswold made another lower-priced range of cast iron known as Iron Mountain. Unlike other cookware made by Griswold Manufacturing, the Iron Mountain range doe not have a logo or trademark on the ironware. This makes it hard to identify than other skillets
But there are a few characteristics which the Iron Mountain skillet series have which can identify them. Look for a rectangular hole in the handle.
Griswold made Iron Mountain cast iron between the 1930s-1940s. Since Iron Mountain cast-iron was a budget line. It is probably not a surprise Iron Mountain skillets have a heat ring for use on older wood and coal ranges.
Griswold Manufacturing made skillets for other companies.
Sears contracted with Griswold Manufacturing Company to make cast iron cookware for their department stores. The Cast Iron Collector also has some great information on cast iron store brands. Griswold store bands that included.
Store brands manufactured in the Griswold foundry.
Manufactured in the 1920s
From the 1920s to-1930s, Griswold Puritan cast iron will have a pattern number at 6 o’clock.
If you have Puritan cast iron, click the link to learn more.
Made from the 1920s to-1930s
Griswold cast iron skillet identification and dating.
- You can identify your skillet by using logos and marking on your skillet. This site and other online resources can help you date your Griswold cast iron skillet.
- The Griswold slant logo block logo with a heat ring is more desired by collectors, And they also tend to be more expensive than skillets without a heat ring.
- However, you will most likely pick up a great Griswold skillet without a heat ring at a lower price.
Pre Griswold is a term used for Erie skillets.
Erie cast iron is sometimes described as Pre Griswold. Griswold Manufacturing Company made Erie cast iron cookware. However, the Erie logo was used before Griswold started to place their company name on their cookware.
Griswold Skillets are wonderful but take your time if you want to buy one.
If you have a Griswold Cast iron skillet. Then you should be one proud owner. Many pay a premium for Griswold cast iron skillets. However, the word is out Griswold to the name to collect. And some sellers are asking some hefty prices. Just take your time if you want to buy one of these beauties.
Griswold made other brands.
If you have an Erie or a Griswold, then you have yourself one fine skillet. But the store brands and the Iron Mountain range are pretty good too. Even though smooth bottom skillets are not as collectible many prefer them on modern hobs.
There is good reason Griswold has the reputation of making some of the best antique cast-iron you can cook with.
Enjoy your skillet.
Here are some FAQs.
Even though an exact amount can not be placed on your skillet. Some sizes and logos are more desired by collectors and enthusiasts. Generally, skillets with heat rings and larger skillets sell at higher prices.
Some Griswold cast iron skillets are rarer than others. While the word is out that Griswold cast iron is the name to collect, some asking prices have skyrocketed and are getting onto the crazy territory.
However, many sellers value their sellers at market value. Especially those who specialize and trade-in vintage cast iron. Another place to look is the sold listings on eBay. It will give you an idea of the value of your skillet.
If your skillet has a Griswold logo, it was made between 1905-1957. During this time, the Griswold Manufacturing Company used a variety of logos and markings Griswold skillets. Luckily we can use these markings to determine the age of your Griswold cast iron skillet.
If you have enjoyed this article, be sure to check out my other articles on vintage cast iron.
- Wagner Wagner was a Griswold Manufacturing main Competitor.
- Wapak Hollow Ware used Erie skillets for templates for their own cast iron skillets.
- Favorite Stove and Range made excellent cast iron. Favorite Piqua Ware, in my opinion, is equal to Wagner and Griswold.
- Sidney Hollow Ware is one of my favorite makers. They also made their cast iron extremely light.