Not all vintage waffle irons are electric. Dutch immigrants brought the first waffle irons to North America in the early 17th century. Held with long handles or tongs, vintage colonial waffle irons baked waffles over an open fire.
Original Dutch and Belgian waffle irons were made of heavy cast iron. The first American-made waffle iron was patented by Cornelius Swartwout in August 1869. The Swartwout waffle iron could be used atop a wood- or gas-burning kitchen stove. The first prototype electric waffle iron was made by General Electric in 1911.
According to The Glass Cottage's antiques reference, vintage waffle irons are among the most highly prized old-time kitchen appliances in 2015.