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Denise Martyn | denisemartyn

The World's Largest Oven

Feb 10th 2015 at 1:28 AM

Now this is definitely not the oven that you would want to have to clean on a regular basis. If it comes to the worst you could have always climbed in it to clean it. Perhaps it was originally dismantled in 1974 because nobody wanted to clean it, or to maintain it anymore.

The interesting thing was nobody got around to destroying the parts, or taking it's remains to a scrapyard to get scrap value for the metal. Mind you would have to got a large truck to take it anywhere as it weighed in at 30,000 lbs or 15-tons, and it stood 25-foot tall.

Worlds largest stove

This monster of an oven was certainly built to impress, and it's story did not end in 1974. The dismantled parts had been stored somewhere and there were people that did a great of work behind the scenes to have it put back together again. Some of the parts had to be remade so it was not entirely the original stove but once again in Detroit, they had built the world's largest stove.

Now the rebuild was completed by 1998, which was some 105 years after it had been completed by the Garland Stove Co in 1893, who specialised in wood burning stoves.  They had built the stove on behalf of the city of Detroit, which it represented at the World's Columbian Exhibition hosted by Chicago that same year.

It was apt that this giant was chosen to represent Detroit as it frequently referred to as Stove City as it predated the emergence of the motor industry there by a few years.

It took a fair amount of effort to restore this coal and wood burning stove to it's former glory. To be precise it took $300,000 raised via the fund-raising efforts of several groups and individual benefactors in the Detroit area. It was John Hertal that led the successful effort to restore the stove in his former role as the manager of the state fair.

After the stove's stint as an attraction at the 1998 Michigan State Fair it was situated outside the Fairground. It was there that the oven was destroyed by fire in August 2011. The investigation by the Fire Service was convinced that a lightning bolt was responsible for the fire.

At present it is unclear whether an attempt will be made to restore the stove again.

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