I have always enjoyed having clocks around the house. I am not sure where or when I first saw a clock, but they have always been in my life for as long as I can remember. In the kitchen I could always here the tick tick tick ding of a timer when my mom would be in the kitchen cooking. Last year Kathleen and I found some really cute kitchen timers called the Mirro Matic Timer. They are pretty basic as far as kitchen timers go, but they are also really cool to look at and use. We have 2 of them and as far as we know they were probably made before the 50’s. Both are made from a combination of aluminum and what I believe is bakelite (Defiantly check out my Bakelite History article).
A Little History
The Mirro Mantic Timers got their roots from the Aluminum Manufacturing Company. This company was founded by Joseph Koenig. Soon after another entrepenur named Henry Vits, hired on some of Joseph Koenigs employees and formed the Manitowoc Aluminum Novelty Company. Eventually the companies, rather than compete against each other, formed the Aluminum Goods Manufacturing Company. In 1917, the Aluminum Goods Manufacturing Company aka “The Goods” started their Mirro brand, which eventually was said to be the world’s largest manufacturer of aluminum cooking utensils.
Like many companies in the US, once WWII happened, the company was forced to retool and switch production to war time efforts. After the war the company retooled again to make products for consumers. One interesting note, in 1954, the company capitalizing on Americas fascination with UFO’s came out with their a snow toy called the Sno-Coaster. These were used by boys and girls to race down hills after a snow storm. The sno-coaster was of course made out of aluminum and resembled a flying saucer.
By the 1960’s the Mirro brand had a huge name brand recognition, so the company switched names to the Mirro Aluminum Company. In 1983 the company was purchased by the Newell Companies and manufacturing eventually moved over seas. Like so many other US companies, eventually the founders vision and US craftsmanship is replaced by cheap labor and off shore manufacturing.
Back To The Mirro Matic Timers
Well now we know that the timers were probably made by the Aluminum Goods Manufacturing Company during the period when the Mirro Brand was really heating up. That would probably put them somewhere in the age range of the 1920’s – 1950’s minus the time when they weren’t produced because of the war efforts.