Skip to main content

Mystery of History

Today’s Mystery of History is a Twig Whisk! Most commonly made of birch twigs, these whisks were especially popular throughout the 18th century. Some recipes even specifically called for whisks made from certain fruit trees like apples, peaches, or pears to help give flavor to the dish.
wisk

Today’s Mystery of History is a heat diffuser. This gadget that appeared in the 1930s was intended to make cooking easier. By dispersing the heat evenly from a gas or electric stove, it minimizes the chance that food will be burned as it cooks. It works great for heat-sensitive foods like rice, oatmeal, and gravy, and is still manufactured today!
heat-diffuser


mystery-history-pic  400x279
Today's Mystery of History is JT McNally's 1879 Coin Scale & Counterfeit Coin Detector. This scale has individual slots designed to fit one of the following: a 1-dollar silver coin, a 50-cent silver coin, a 25-cent silver coin, a 10-dollar gold coin, a 5-dollar gold coin, a 3-dollar coin, a 2 ½-dollar gold coin, or a 1-dollar gold coin. Counterfeit coins differed from standard coins by weight, thickness, or diameter, and this machine measured all three at once to ensure the coins were genuine.


toaster-mystery-history
Today’s Mystery of History is a toaster! The Knoblock Pyramid Toaster is a stovetop toaster which wasinvented in Ohio in 1909. Its hollow center and vented sides allowed it to toast bread while its flat top could keep a pot of coffee or tea hot while you waited!  Fun fact: the average household spends about 35 hours toasting bread every year! 


Today's "Mystery of History" is a skep - a traditional beehive that has been used for centuries commonly woven out of rye straw. When the Langstroth Hive, which is what we use today, was invented in 1851, these skeps began to fall out of favor.
skep-outside


Today’s Mystery of History is the Slice-a-Slice Bread Slicer!

Manufactured during the 1940’s and 50’s, this bread slicer helped hostesses make dainty sandwiches, popular at ladies’ luncheons, by holding a conventional slice of bread while it was cut into two quarter-inch pieces.

grater


Down on the Farm
Hands-on History
Explore the Outdoors
In the Kitchen
What Is It?
People from the Past