Growing up in my house, we used a very old pop-up toaster to make our morning toast. When I say old, I mean very, very old. It was no longer shiny, but the metal and strong base shouted durability.
As a young child, I actually thought it was from ancient times. It turns out, it wasn't really medieval, but rather a present that my grandparents had received as a newly married couple in the 1950s.
This toaster worked perfectly every single day without fail, turning our bread a light brown color and popping out the pieces just in time. It was a no-fail piece of cookery.
At some point, however, our trusty toaster did eventually stop working. It was with a sad heart that my parents laid it to rest, and replaced it with a new, plastic model.
What caused my family to cling to that toaster throughout the years? Appliances from that era were made to last, but I believe that it meant more to us than just a good, dependable appliance. It was something deeper. We cherished that toaster as one would cling to the most valuable famly heirloom. For us, it held deep sentimental value.
Old household items remind us of times gone by. We think about how our grandparents and great-grandparents acquired them. Were they passed down through the generations -- or perhaps our ancestors took a trip to the hardware or general store to get an early model just coming on the market.
I know that my parents held on to that toaster to remember my grandparents and their new life together as a family. It became a symbol of the continuation of our family and its future generations.
I don't know where that toaster is today, but I do hope to pass on similar family heirlooms to our children.
What is the oldest household appliance that you own? What history does it contain?
Search for your ancestors: