The History of Waffles

Today is National Waffle Day!

via the National Museum of American History

The National Museum of American History’s Domestic Life collection includes waffle irons that date from the early 18th century through the mid-20th century. They provide a glimpse into American eating habits as well as innovations that shaped the domestic sphere. What better way to take advantage of National Waffle Day than to explore the tasty history of one of our most beloved breakfast treats?

Today’s date is significant because it is the date of the first patent issued for a waffle iron. On August 24, 1869, the U.S. Patent Office issued a patent to Cornelius Swartwout of Troy, New York, for his design for an “Improvement in Waffle-Irons.” (More than one spelling can be found for the inventor’s name, including Swartwout and Swarthout. I’ll use “Swartwout” in this post as it’s the one I’ve come across most often in my research.)

Read more.


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