The Iron Mountain line of vintage cast iron cookware is amongst my favorite of the old iron. Sometimes my Iron Mountain chicken pan is my very favorite of all of my pans; other times I am very partial to my old cracked “ERIE” no. 11 skillet.
According to the Blue Book, the Iron Mountain line was manufactured by the Griswold Manufacturing Company in Erie, PA in the 1940s. Neither the Griswold name nor trademark is on the pieces. I like the aesthetics, heft, and cooking surface of this fine old cookware. Because it is not marked with the Griswold name, it is also often found at a more reasonable price-point than cookware marked with the Griswold trademark.
Because the line is “unmarked” – meaning it doesn’t carry the name or logo/trademark of the manufacturer – folks sometimes don’t know that their piece is part of the Iron Mountain line, made by Griswold. Here is some info to help you identify the Iron Mountain line.
What to look for to identify Griswold Iron Mountain
The shape of the Iron Mountain skillet handle is unmistakeable – see above.
The Iron Mountain skillets all have inset heat rings. The heat ring, of course, is the circular raised ring at the bottom of the skillet. The purpose of the ring was to hold the pan within the open stove “eye” on the old coal or wood-burning stoves.
Every cast iron cookware piece in the Iron Mountain line is marked with a pattern number. The pattern number is typically found on the bottom or underside of the piece (as shown in the photos above). Each pattern number in the Iron Mountain line has four digits. The pattern numbers for the line are set forth below.
PN 1029: number 4 skillet, heat ring
PN 1030: number 5 skillet, heat ring (in the skillet photo above)
PN 1031: number 6 skillet, heat ring
PN 1032: number 7 skillet, heat ring
PN 1033: number 8 skillet, heat ring
PN 1034: deep skillet, heat ring
PN 1035: number 8 skillet cover/lid
PN 1036: number 8 Dutch oven, heat ring
PN 1037: number 8 Dutch oven cover/lid (in the lid photo above)
PN 1038: number 9 Dutch oven, heat ring
PN 1039: number 9 Dutch oven cover/lid
PN 1040: number 10 Dutch oven, heat ring
PN 1041: number 10 Dutch oven cover/lid
PN 1042: number 7 Dutch oven, heat ring
PN 1043: number 7 Dutch oven cover/lid
PN 1058: number 8 handle griddle
PN 1059: number 9 handle griddle
PN 1077: number 7 long griddle
PN 1078: number 8 long griddle
PN 1079: number 9 long griddle
PN 1081: number 6 skillet, heat ring
PN 1082: number 9 skillet, heat ring
PN 1083: number 10 skillet, heat ring
PN 1084: number 12 skillet, heat ring
PN 1085: number 14 skillet, heat ring
PN 1087: number 7 skillet cover/lid
PN 1088: number 8 skillet cover/lid
PN 1089: number 9 skillet cover/lid
PN 1090: number 10 skillet cover/lid
Iron Mountain Self-Basting Lids
Iron Mountain Covers are self-basting, with raised broken concentric circles on the underside, as shown in the photo above. Griswold also has self-basting lids, but their self-basting lids have raised unbroken concentric circles on the underside.
The iron quality of the Iron Mountain line is that of Griswold. Once you’ve handled a number of Griswold pieces, you’ll get a feel for the iron. It is satin-smooth, lightweight compared to iron pans of current manufacture, and the walls of the pieces are much thinner than those currently made.
I think the Iron Mountain line is truly exceptional. I hope that this information helps when you’re out on your cast iron hunt!