Object of the month: Coffee grinder

Monthly Artifacts

Many people around the world start their day with a cup of coffee. The history of drinking coffee is said to have started in Ethiopia 1500 years ago. A shepherd, named Kaldi, noticed the goats behaving strangely after eating a plant with red berries. They could not fall asleep at night. He told a monk, who became interested in this phenomenon. The monk poured water over the berries and drank it. Since this discovery the monks did not have any problems staying awake during prayers.

This coffee grinder, of the brand Dienes, was made in 1937. The grinder looks different from other coffee grinders from this period. Most of them are wooden boxes with a grinder and a hand crank on top of it. Underneath there is a small tray where the coffee is collected. However, this coffee grinder is fastened to a table and the hand crank is located on the side. The Nazis brought this coffee grinder from Germany and left it behind in 1944. 

Written by Ann-Silje Ingebrigtsen, collection staff