Much has changed between 1916 and 2016 – cars are faster, stamps don’t cost 2 cents and the population of the United States has nearly tripled. Thermador, the all American appliance brand that is known as the leader in luxury cooking, has also seen incredible change during the last 100 years – and it is surprising to see the incredible impact Thermador had across a variety of industries in the first 30-40 years of its existence.

William E. Cranston founded Thermador as a manufacturer of built-in and portable electric items. In the very first decades, Thermador dabbled in various materials and created a wide range of products that span across an array of industries.

Thermador Vintage Heater

Sparking innovation from the very beginning, during the 1920s Thermador introduced the first built-in electric room heaters – during a time when electric appliances were just beginning to rise in popularity in the home. By the next decade, the brand introduced “Skyscraper,” a unique Art Deco Line of electric space heaters that demonstrated the Thermador way of leading with innovation that drives performance, power and timeless design.

Vintage Thermador Heater

During these decades, Thermador also created components for the broadcast industry, room coolers, built-in heaters, swamp coolers, water heaters and distinguished air coolers for vehicles that pre-dated car air conditioning – considered to be a highly valuable collectible item today.

Thermador Car Cooler

Interestingly, during WWII 100% of Thermador production was for the war effort, and this heritage in engineering led to even more industry firsts. By 1942, Thermador was a major player in the war effort from behind the battlefront. The brand’s engineers developed new ways to seal and protect electronics from extreme ranges of temperature and humidity on five fronts, from the deserts of northern Africa to the jungles of the Pacific.

Thermador World War 2 Ad

Throughout the past century, Thermador has worn many hats and pushed the boundaries and limits on appliance design, continuously reimagining, reshaping and creating outstanding products for the homes of culinary enthusiasts. In the 1930s, it is well-known that Thermador launched its flagship line of products – cooking appliances. In future blog posts, we will explore how this introduction shaped the future of Thermador – and the American kitchen.