Inventing the U.S. Stove Industry, c.1815-1875: Making and Selling the First Universal Consumer Durable

Posted: 4 Mar 2009 Last revised: 17 Jan 2015

H.J. Harris

Durham University - Department of History

Date Written: March 4, 2009

Abstract

This article examines the emergence of the American stove industry, detailing the complex interactions among changes in the product, the organization of production, and the methods of selling cast-iron heating and cooking equipment to consumers nationwide, particularly in the antebellum years. This highly competitive industry, composed of hundreds of proprietary firms, became a site of considerable innovation in marketing. Manufacturers integrated forward, controlling the sale and distribution of their goods through networks of small retailers nationwide. The article explains how and why.

Keywords: stoves, consumer durables, distribution networks

JEL Classification: M3, N81, D3, D4

Suggested Citation

Harris, H.J., Inventing the U.S. Stove Industry, c.1815-1875: Making and Selling the First Universal Consumer Durable (March 4, 2009). Business History Review, Vol. 82, No. 4. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1353442

Howell John Harris (Contact Author)

Durham University - Department of History ( email )

43 N. Bailey
Durham, DH1 3EX
United Kingdom

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
1,830