The kitchen has long been called the heart of the home. From cooking one-pot meals over an open fire to microwaving a pre-packaged dinner, the kitchen is the focal point for family gatherings. Heart of the Home, an installation in the front window of the History Museum features the hearth’s importance in our daily lives over time, using kitchen-related items from our collections.
A ca. 1915 Monarch wood-burning stove made by the Malleable Iron Range Co.
An 1875 comal, or tortilla griddle.
A 1905 Wapak waffle iron.
An 1890 curling iron and stand made by Nicol and Co., Chicago. (Before electrical appliances, curling irons were heated on a cast-iron stove for straightening or styling hair.)
An 1866 fluting iron used to put pleats into garments.
A ca. 1800 French oak table.
The exhibit joins the museum’s Women of the West summer celebration, highlighted by the exhibit Home Lands: How Women Made the West in the second-floor Albert and Ethel Herzstein Changing Exhibitions Gallery. Both exhibits feature noted New Mexico home economist Fabiola Cabeza de Baca Gilbert.
“As a home economist,” Cabeza de Baca wrote in her 1949 book The Good Life, “I am happy to see modern kitchens and improved diets, but my artistic soul deplores the passing of beautiful customs which in spite of New Mexico’s isolation in the past, gave us happiness and abundant living.”
Download high-resolution images from the exhibit by clicking on "go to related images," below.