Hoosier Cabinets were started near the turn of the century when
many companies were building cabinets for kitchens. The style of cabinet
shown above is typical of the designs that were created by Hoosier. Many
companies peroduced this type of cabinet. Among them are names like Sellers,
Boone, McDougall, Napanee, and others. Even Montgomery Ward had a cabinet
produced. Most people genericly refer to thes style cabinets as Hoosier,
like people refer to facial tissues as Kleenex. Hoosier cabinets could be
purchased in a Plain Jane model all the way up to the very fancy type with
all the bells and whistles, much like cars are sold today. Things like flour
bins, sugar, jars, spice, jars, menu cards, bread boxes and food grinders
could be added. Some cabinets even had stained glass door panels.
Porcelain tops were introduced around 1915. Before 1915 the tops cover
in a metal tin like material. Porcelain tops were being reproduced by a
manufacturer in Indiana for a while but it closed. Porcelain tops are hard
to find. If you can't find one then covering a the wood top with a sheet
of metal is as close to original as you can get. If you choose to replace
the top with metal be sure to use one appropriate for food preparation.
Some metals are not suitable if you intend to use it. If your porcelain
top has damge near the front then turning the top around can hide some of
the damage under the upper cabinet, as the rear edge has been protected
by the upper cabinet.
During the war years some cabinets were produced with plastic/ bakelite
type handles, latch and knobs. You will not find these in reproduction either.
Your only hope may be finding some old but they are rare to find. It is
sometimes best to replace all the hardware with reproduction if the bakelite
type can't be found.
Hoosier also made kitchen tables and chimney cabinets and chairs to
match their hoosier cabintets.