Posted 4 years ago
This is my street vender's wagon "Peanut Roaster/ Popcorn" steam engine made by the Cretors Co. and used in the late 19th and early 20th century. Street vendors sold a number of items in their street wagons sort of like the ice cream trucks that travel the neighborhoods in the summer months and play their tune to attract children. The street vendors used their steam powered whistles to attract interested patrons to see their offerings.
These offerings were not only peanuts and popcorn, the wagon vendors also sold candy, sandwiches, soda, and sometimes even beer to the customers, still, the most popular items were the roasted peanuts and the roasted popcorn, probably because of the aroma that these two items released to aroused the hunger of the patrons.
The street wagons were usually powers by gasoline to heat the roasters and to turn water into steam to power the engines and turn the roasting drums. There also was a wind up roasting drum that was sometimes used, but for the most part, they used a steam engine to power the roasters.
There were three prevalent manufacturers making these street vending wagons, … they were .... the Cretors Co. (by far the most popular), the Kingery Co. , and the Dunbar Co. (of which I did own a Dunbar and regretfully sold).
These small steam engines have become very desirable and prized by collectors worldwide.
See my next listing for a view of my Kingery Peanut roasting engine.