In 1943 Berea College, in Kentucky, participates in the WWII effort by organizing a scrap metal drive. Here students stand on iron bed frames and make a victory sign with the bed rails. These beds seem to have always been viewed as a “green” item to be used for the greater good in times of war.
One of the things that brought the golden age of iron beds to a close near 1917 when the US enter WWI. The war had started in 1914, but we didn’t get involved until 1917.
The Industrial Revolution had been in full swing.Technology, science, and inventions have progressed at an accelerated rate during the hundred years of the 20th century, more so than any other century.
We began the 20th century with the infancy of airplanes, automobiles, and radio, when those inventions dazzled us with their novelty and wonder.
Unfortunately these beds had been thrown into the need for armaments and the war effort. That coupled with the accelerated rate at which man was getting away from and crafted items and into a production line economy, soon brought the production of beautiful old antique beds to halt.
As many streamlined manufacturing and lessened the popularity of metal beds, man sought a simpler less ornate way to keep his mattress off the ground. Soon upholstered headboards would become all the rage. These beds then would be relegated to the scrape piles like in this photo.
But time and styles have a way of repeating themselves, and beautiful cast beds would again experience evn more popularity that they ever did in the heyday.
Today the collectibility, rarity and investment value of antique beds have made them one of the most treasured antique’s people search for.