The Marshall Johnson Collection: From Concept Design to Final Product

Monday, March 18, 2019

Marshall Johnson’s collection includes the documentation for his whole design process, from concept designs to production drawings, packaging, and marketing materials. It also includes examples for some of his finished products. Among them are numerous Black & Decker power tools and small electric appliances and cookware produced by Wear-Ever, Proctor Silex, and Hamilton Beach, as well as CUTCO knives and sheaths, all designed by Johnson. His most successful products were those he created for Wear-Ever during the 1970s and 1980s, which included the Popcorn Pumper and the Kabob-It, pictured below, along with some of his other creations and their information sheets.

Top row: The first product Johnson designed for Black & Decker, the U-251 Deluxe Jig Saw, 1961.
Center row: The Popcorn Pumper (1981) and the Kabob-It (1982), designed for Wear-Ever.
Bottom row: Wear-Ever cookware (1988), with handle designed by Johnson, and a Cerama bowl (early 1980s), featuring another of Johnson's innovative ideas. Products from this line were designed for the blind, with the fill line on the inside of bowl and information in braille on bottom.

Top row: Proctor Silex Steam and Dry Iron (1988), one of many iron variations that Johnson worked on while at Wear-Ever / Proctor Silex (and later at Hamilton Beach / Proctor Silex).
Center row: Hamilton Beach Mincing Magic Mini Food Chopper (1992)
and Hamilton Beach Food Processor (1992), both Johnson products.
Bottom row: CUTCO knife, with Thomas Lamb handle design and knife sheath (both 1970s), designed by Johnson while working at Wear-Ever’s CUTCO division.



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Gail Stanislow is a Project Archivist at Hagley Museum and Library.