The first US waffle iron was patented in 1869. Since then various companies have manufactured waffle irons.
In the Universal Electric Housewares catalog from 1950, Landers, Frary & Clark advertised the Universal Sandwich Grill and Waffle Maker as an appliance which makes “quickie suppers or a ‘hurry up’ breakfast.” Besides making waffles and toasting sandwiches, it also fries or grills eggs, bacon, hamburgers, and fish cakes. It comes with two “quick-and-easy-to-change grids” which transform it from a waffle maker to a surface grill or vice versa. And the expansion hinge allows both small and large sandwiches, even “3-deckers,” to be toasted.
Universal Electric Housewares and other catalogs from Landers, Frary & Clark of New Britain, Connecticut can be found in the Trade Literature Collection at the National Museum of American History Library.—Alexia MacClainTop: Landers, Frary & Clark, Universal Electric Housewares catalog, 1950
Bottom: catalog assortment (photos by Liz O'Brien)