This beautifully designed antique wood or coal parlor stove ash door is an outstanding piece. The door features a classic acanthus leaf design, a motif popular ever since the Greeks used those leaves to grace the tops of their Corinthian columns. Victorian and Edwardian Era design drew heavily on those Grecian leaves too, and this stove door is a perfect example!
The antique stove ash door utilizes the curved Acanthus leaves to outline 4 flowers. Cleverly, the artist used the central 3 flowers to block the 3 vent holes in the ash door when closed. To open the vents, one just slides that small tab to the right of the central flower and pushes it to the left. This is part of the sliding door behind the main door and the 3 vents can be opened to any desired opening size--a tiny crack to completely open. The sliding door works very well and easily.
The color and texture of the cast iron is really appealing. It is a gun-metal dark grey with a satiny feel. I did not polish it; it is just as I found it when I picked it up over 20 years ago. It appears to be in beautiful condition.
If you notice, on the left side of the door, there are hinge tabs that would fit into the stove body. On the right, there is a plated toggle knob that operates the latch. (Ash doors were included on wood/coal stoves to clean out the ashes and provide ventilation to the fire within.) You can see in the 4th photo it has a gentle curve to it--slightly bowed out in the center of the door and curves back at the 2 ends.
The stove door is beautiful just as a conversation piece as it is. I had thought to use it with some house plants as part of a planter. Since it still works as a vent, perhaps that function could come into play? It is of course heat proof, in that it was part of a heating stove. Incorporate it into a fire ring? Those who love re-purposing old, antique items into something Steampunk wonderful, might have other ideas.
The backside of the door is marked in raised letters and numbers in the casting on the latch end: NL '883 and NL 18 87 4 on the slider.
The ash door measures 22 1/4 inches in total length, from the hinge edge to right side edge. The door, not including the hinge tabs, measures 21 3/8 inches in length. It is 5 3/8 tall. The holes are 2 1/8 inches in diameter. On the back side of the door, the slider is 12 1/4 inches long x 3 inches tall.
As I mentioned, I have had this piece for over 20 years--it is time I passed it on so someone else can use it for some wonderful purpose or for a spectacular display piece.
Feel free to ask questions. The ash door is located in Brookfield, Wisconsin (just west of Milwaukee County.)
I sell from a smoke-free, pet-free home. All sales are final. Payment is due in cash upon pickup.
Posted in: Antiques
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