Nineteen Thirties: The world falls in love with AGA cookers
The popularity of AGA heat storage cookers grew steadily through the 1930s. In 1931 a total of 322 AGA cookers were bought, with sales soaring to 1,705 just 12 months later. Among the keys to its success were the talents of salesman David Ogilvy, who went on to form the worldwide advertising giant Ogilvy Mather. He was one of the company's first salesmen and his 'The Theory and Practice of Selling an AGA Cooker' has been described by Fortune Magazine as 'the finest instruction manual ever written'.
In 1934 the AGA Cookbook was published by Sheila Hibben, who explained that Dalén had "tackled the problem with a view to creating a stove that would provide all the conveniences and economy that modern engineering demands". The book was published in the USA, proof of the AGA cooker's growing popularity outside Britain.
The picture to the right shows an AGA heat-storage cooker at Garton & King Ltd's Stand at the Devon County Agricultural Associations Show held at Newton Abbot, Devon in 1934. The photo taken by Henry E. Holladay, the last Managing Director of Garton & King Ltd is just one of many from their history shown on their website from 1661 to 1990.
Did you know?
In 1934 16 members of the Graham Land Expedition Team took an AGA cooker to the Antarctic. For the next three years their AGA cooker ensured they ate well and lived in warmth and comfort, despite the thermostat dropping to -40°C outside.