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Oxford Universal Four-Burner Gas Range

Display: Fire and Heat
Culinary Technique: cooking

Date: 1932

Manufacturer: Cribben and Sexton Company

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Dimensions: 36" h x 42" w x 25" d

During the depression, industry turned to design to inspire consumer desire and boost sales. Glamorous streamlined styling brought excitement to architecture and home interiors. Color enlivened the home kitchen—the green and ivory combination of this easy-clean, porcelain-enameled steel stove was very popular. The stove's sleek lines, ceramic knobs, and graceful curved legs blended fashion with modern efficiency.

By the 1930s, reliable and affordable natural gas distribution in urban areas resulted in more choices for safe gas ranges, and dangerous oil-fueled stoves became less common. This stove's flip-down panel covered the four burners on the left when not in use, turning the full range top into a work surface. Most important, the temperature control dial at the right allowed cooks to regulate the oven heat. Oven thermometers were first introduced around 1915, but it took more than a decade for them to become standard equipment on stoves.