C. Cretors & Company Machines

Cretors 1921 #6 Popcorn and Peanut Roaster


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This #6 popper was sold to Mr. E.C. Potter on May 24, 1921, in Beattie, Kansas, for $585.00. The serial number is 21003. It was traditional at Cretors & Co. at that time that the first two numbers of the serial would be the year of manufacturing. Therefore, this was probably the third machine manufactured in 1921. Since it was not actually sold until May, it was probably carried as an inventory machine for several months.

The restoration of this machine was done by Ray Arrington of Victorian Casino Antiques, Las Vegas, Nevada . It is beautifully done in its original color with gold leaf and striping of the best of the Cretors poppers.

It was obtained by Roy Arrington in 1990 from Mr. J. Wigglesworth of Kansas City, Kansas. Mr. Wigglesworth is a collector of antique cars and trucks. He obtained this antique and a similar Cretors antique called the "Earn-More" at the same time from the estate of Paul Berry.

Paul Berry was a merchant distributing coal oil "kerosene" throughout the Kansas area over many years. He was a collector who said very little about his collection. As he got older, he gradually filled a huge estate to the top with only narrow aisles of space to walk. At the time of his death, there was an auction to clean out all the antiques. The auction brought between $2,000,000 and $3,000,000. His collection included Cretors Model C and Model D popcorn wagons that had been stored outside. They were badly rusted. The only salvageable parts were the larger castings.

Sometime before Mr. Berry 's death, while he was putting this collection together, he bought the Sauer Estate. The Sauer Estate included a castle-type house called " Sauer Castle ." Also in the collection was a full room of rockers, a full room of wagon wheels, and a Cretors No. 1 wagon that was later sold through the Red Baron Auction in Atlanta .

The auction occurred in 1987 and was attended by Roy Arrington of Victorian Casino Antiques, as well as Robert Pearson of Pearson & Company in Olathe , Kansas . The auction was managed by Farrell's Auction Gallery, a large auction house in Kansas City . The collection also included a Holcomb & Hoke steam engine with boiler designed very similar to the Cretors. All of the castings had the Holcomb & Hoke insignia on them. This unusual antique was desirable to Mr. Arrington, but he was outbid by Mr. Wigglesworth's son. Later, Mr. Wigglesworth informed him that he was ready to sell the No. 6 and the Earn-More antiques. Roy Arrington purchased them both. The No. 6 was restored and sold to the Wyandot Popcorn Museum .

When Roy Arrington began the restoration, all of the metal pieces were badly rusted and needed replaced because it had been stored in a damp basement for many years. The castings were clean and nickel-plated. The quality of this restoration is evident of the skills of the restorer.

This is the second Cretors #6 that has been on display at the museum.  The first one was sold to Paul Newman to display at his charity. 


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