The Puritan name is associated with many products on both sides of the Atlantic. Including several products made from cast iron. However, in this article, you can learn about Puritan cast iron cookware made for the Sears Roebuck & Co Department Store. And you will be able to date and identify the manufacturer of your skillets, Dutch ovens, and waffle irons.
Table of contents
- Background on Puritan cast iron
- The Puritan line of ironware.
- Who made Puritan cast iron cookware?
- Is the quality the same between Griswold and Favorite?
- The reason for the estimated date of manufacturing.
- How to identify Puritan cast iron?
- Is Puritan cast iron collectible?
- Should you buy the ironware?
- Final thoughts
Sears, Roebuck & Co
Richard Warren Sears
Alvah Curtis Roebuck
Cast Iron Cookware Outsourced
Favorite Stove & Range
Griswold Manufacturing Company
Cast Iron Cookware Range
Skillets, Dutch Ovens, Waffle Irons, Cornbread Pans, etc.
Date of Manufacture
Manufacturing possibly started as early as 1916.
However, manufacturing dates from the 1920s through to the 1930s is more likely.
The Puritan cast iron line of cookware.
The name Puritan was an in-house store brand for Sears Roebuck & Co. And the Puritan name was on a wide range of instore products. Probably the most known was the Puritan men’s clothing line.
The Sears Puritan line is also on other kitchenware such as wood stoves, meat grinders, and copper pots.
But for vintage cast iron enthusiasts, you will find the Puritan name on the following.
- Dutch Ovens
- Pop Over Pans
- Wheat Sticks Pans
- Waffle Irons
Who made Puritan cast iron skillets and waffle irons?
The Sears Roebuck & Co contracted two foundries to make the Puritan hollowware line.
- Favorite Stove and Range (Dates and History)
- The Griswold Manufacturing Company (History)
Both companies were leading manufacturers of cast iron cookware in the 20th century. Favorite and Griswold produced lightweight pans with smooth cooking surfaces. They are still highly regarded today and favored among collectors.
Is there a difference between Griswold and Favorite Puritan cast iron?
Griswold is the big name in vintage cast iron. But you can expect both Griswold and Favorite equally high in terms of quality. If you have a Favorite Stove & Range made Puritan, you should not be disappointed.
And most people will identify the Sears line as Puritan cast iron and will not differentiate or favor Griswold over Favorite.
How old is Puritan cast iron? Circa the 1920s-1930s.
I suspect both Favorite Stove and Range and Griswold Manufacturing manufactured ironware for the Sears Department store from the 1920s-1930s. However, Favorite Stove and Range may have manufactured ironware before this date. Here’s how I come to this conclusion.
Estimating the date of Puritan cast iron should be easy. Read old Sears catalogs and pinpoint the year the company introduced Puritan ironware. Unfortunately, these old catalogs are not an easily accessible resource. And enthusiasts such as myself try the best we can to piece the history together.
However, we know Sears Roebuck & Co had a retail expansion in the 1920s. The company expanded the number of retail stores and increased its selection of in-store products during this time. Such as the Puritan line.
It also seems likely that Griswold and Favorite manufactured ironware for the Sears Roebuck Department store concurrently. Interestingly, I have seen mismatched Dutch ovens and lids from the two foundries. So, I’m assuming ironware from the two foundries was for sale in the department store at the same time.
How to identify Puritan Cast Iron?
Since both foundries manufactured ironware for Sears, how do you identify Favorite Stove and Range cast iron and Griswold cast iron?
There are a few markings and identifiers you can use to find out who made your cast iron. Was it Griswold or Favorite Stove and Range?
These markers are evident on cast iron skillets and include:
- Handle Design
- Pattern numbers
- Heat Rings
Identify and date Puritan cast iron made by Favorite Stove & Range.
The ironware could be as early as circa 1916-1934. But I suspect it’s more likely your ironware is circa 1920-1934 because of the Sears retail expansion mentioned earlier.
To identify Favorite Stove and Range Puritan ironware, check for the following.
- A mold letter following the size number, for example, 8E.
On skillets, there are two more identifiers, and they are:
- Outer heat ring (raised rim on the circumference of the pan).
- Traditional handle design with a teardrop handle hole.
Identify Puritan cast iron made by Griswold Manufacturing.
Luckily for us, Griswold Manufacturing by the 1920s marked ironware with a pattern number. On Griswold made Puritan cast iron, you will see the following:
- A four-digit pattern number, for example, 1503.
On skillets, you can also check for:
- Inset heat ring (raised ring, slightly inset from the circumference).
- The handle end is bulbous with a small raindrop-shaped hole.
Is the ironware collectible?
Puritan cast iron cookware is collectible. People like vintage cast iron because it’s lighter than modern cast iron, and it tends to be smoother. And Puritan cast iron checks these boxes. Griswold Manufacturing and Favorite Stove and Range made the cookware, and they are both highly respected foundries.
However, Puritan is a store brand, and the number of products available to collect is limited. Sizes are also limited, and you a likely to see the most popular sizes of the time, such as #3 #5 #7 #8 #9 #10.
Buying Puritan cast iron
Keep an eye out for Puritan cast iron now that you can date and identify the ironware. Because many buyers only look for Griswold and Wagner-marked pans, you could get yourself a good deal.
And you can expect your pan to be equal in quality to the cast iron made by Favorite Stove and Range and Griswold Manufacturing.
Many companies used the word Puritan as product branding in the early 19th century. My guess is the name suggested trust and wholesomeness from a bygone era. Similar to how we use the words handmade or organic to sell a product today.
I want to be more concrete with the date, but circa the 1920s to 1930s look close. And I think Favorite Stove and Range and Griswold manufactured Puritan cast iron cookware at the same time.
However, Favourite Stove and Range closed in early 1935. So it is likely Griswold continued all the Puritan cast iron line after this date.
I hope you found the article helpful, and more importantly, enjoy your vintage ironware.