Sunday, November 15, 2009

Cast Iron Water Kettle

When we began using the woodstove for the first time, people warned me how drying wood heat was. A friend told me that his grandmother always kept a large cast iron kettle filled with water on the stove to help humidify the air. He had warm memories of her house filled with the smells of cloves and cinnamon that she added to the kettle.

I immediately was reminded of a old cast iron water kettle that I purchased several years ago at a yard sale for only a few bucks. The people I purchased it from used it on their own wood stove and the inside was caked with potpourri and rust. The plan was to clean it up and use it for a potted plant.

Instead it will continue its purpose as a kettle atop a wood burning stove. An occupation it may has been participating in for many years. I did some online research, and found several similar kettles for sale that say they are from the late 1800s to early 1900s. I don’t know this for sure as I haven’t found any proof of this yet.

The base of the kettle is inset to allow it to sit directly into a woodstove burner hole. It has a wire handle and a swivel lid with the words “Double Star” on one side of the lid and a number “8” on the other. I am not sure if the lid is original to the kettle, but it fits perfectly. Unfortunately, if there were any markings on the bottom of the kettle at one time they are no longer visible as the surface is a bit corroded.

Can anyone point me to a website where I can continue my research? Any help in identifying this kettle would be greatly appreciated.


  1. Sadly I haven't a clue. Whenever it was made it is a great year sale find. I never go to them because the last thing I want is more stuff in my house. I keep trying to get rid of things instead.

  2. Haven't a clue either, but it's a perfect match. It looks in mint condition. Good call keeping it as a kettle.

  3. I will look at some of my resources. I was an antique dealer for many years, but I never had a cast iron kettle. Lots of other cast iron stuff, and some of it is very valuable. I will get back to you.

  4. I seem to always have a pot of water boiling on the stove in the winter. I can't stand the dry air.

  5. No help, but how lovely. Reminds me to get my pot of water on my faux wood fire I started this morning. Gas heat for my house, but it's still drying.

  6. that is an awesome find! i love that kettle. we always keep a cast iron bin full of water as well on our woodstove. every once in a while, i'll throw in some dried citrus peel or rosemary to the water for a little extra perk.

  7. Daphne: I don’t usually go to yard sales either, but I was helping a friend with hers when she was downsizing to a condo. She paid me in antiques ☺

    Miss M: I was amazed how good it looked beneath the rust.

    Janie: Any help would be great, thanks!

    Ribbit: We have humidifiers, fish tanks, and houseplants, but need even more moisture.

    Stefaneener: Moisture is good for skin and hair.

    Allison: Rosemary and dried citrus sound like a great idea! Thanks!

  8. I really really wish we had a wood stove....I kills me to think about all of the heat that escape from our fireplace.

  9. Can you believe that we didn't even use the woodstove for several years?! I didn't know how to use it and was afraid of it. We've been using it almost every day now.