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Antique Cast Iron Fireplace Grate / Insert for Wood or Coal w/ Winking Moon Face & Six Pointed Stars - Americana - Folk Art - Fire Place
There was a time when even the humblest objects were produced with beautiful, decorative details, as this wonderful, cast iron fireplace grate illustrates. The large back plate is adorned with a deep relief casting, the charming and whimsical image of a grinning, winking moon face set in a field of six-pointed stars. Think of it as a delightful piece of jewelry for your hearth.
Condition is grand. Part of the fire-bed swivels and lifts out to help with ash removal. There is one small crack at the back corner of the stationary part of the fire-bed which does not compromise the strength, beauty, or functionality at all (difficult to even see it in the last photograph). Measures 19 3/4" across the front at its widest point, 14 " tall at its tallest point, and 10" deep. While modern cast iron pieces often have a dull matte finish, this piece shines with a lovely warm luster; it wears its years well.
I found this piece in New England, the first region of the US to be transformed by the Industrial Revolution in the 19th C, and I believe it originated there in one of the early foundries. Guaranteed antique, it is an unusual and fantastical piece.
The decorative back plate did more than just look great. In its day, it served to corral the logs or coals being burnt, and more importantly the cast iron would retain and radiate heat from the fire much more efficiently than a similarly sized fire laid on the hearth floor. And the best part is, it still works! Not a bad idea on a chilly winter night. Treat yourself.
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Marni Bakst, Verbank, NY
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