8 Rare Vintage Candy, Gum & Cigarette Vending Machines
Modern vending machines were immensely popular during the ’50s and’60s. These “24 hour shops” dispensed all types of products, including household items (like razor blades) and school supplies (like pencils). The most active vending machines served up candy, cigarettes and soda pops.
Here we feature some rare finds. Some of these machines were restored by us, though we’re no longer in that business. We share them as part of the Retro Museum.
Sorry, these machines are not for sale.
First up is a Stoner Theater Candy Machine (shown left). This 8-selection machine was produced during the 1950s. Lights on the front of the machine makes it one of the more rare Stoner units. Originally this type of machine was displayed in movie theaters, and it accepts nickels, dimes and quarters.
Manufactured by Stoner Mfg. Corp. (Aurora, Ill.), this machine holds up to 160 candy bars. It measures 68″H x 30″W x 14″D and weighs 240 pounds.
The U Select-It is a compact candy vending machine made by Coan Manufacturing (Madison, Wis.) from 1940 to the early ’50s. This automatic machine accepts either two nickels or one time, and holds from 80 to 120 candy bars. Though quite narrow – it’s just 12″W x 12″D, the unit stands 72″H. A wheel on the side can be used to rotate the carousel so you can see all different candy bars before making a selection. The unit weighs 100 pounds.
The Stoner Penny Vendor Fresh Gum Machine (above) was made during the ’40s and ’50s. These units were often attached to the sides of the candy machines and dispensed small gums, like Adams Chiclets. This machine takes pennies and measures 17″H x 11.5″W x 4.5″D.
Another model of the Stoner Theater Candy Vendor was built in the 1950s and featured an illuminated front panel. Housing 8 selections, the beautiful art deco design makes this one a rare vendor in the Stoner line. Accepting nickels, dimes and quarters, these more stylish units would have been used in more upscale movie theaters. The unit holds 160 candy bars and measures 68″H x 30″W x 14-1/2″D. It weighs 240 pounds.
Manufactured by The Vendo Company (Kansas City, Missouri) in the 1950s, the Dairy-Vend Ice Cream Vending Machine was found in a variety of locations. Measuring 36-1/4″H x 34-1/4″W x 29-1/2″D, this restored unit (which includes custom graphics) would typically had first emerged in light blue.
To operate the ice cream vendor, you’d insert a dime and open a door on the top and take a bar. That means this unit would commonly serve up only one style of ice cream bar.
Cigarette and cigar vending machines were also popular during the ’40s and ’50s. The Cigaromat 6-Selection machine was made during the 1950s by the Cigaromat Service Corp. These were also available in a 3-selection tabletop version. The pull handles are made of Bakelite. The floor version shown above has been restored, and the graphics are not original.
We also restored the 1940s Cigarette Vending Machine (above), which features an art deco design. This unit was likely used in a nice restaurant, nightclub or theater. Unfortunately, the details on this particular unit are unknown, and we do not know who manufactured the unit.
Last up is the Stoner 180M Candy Vending Machine. From the 1950s, this 8-selection machine includes a gum and mint selector. The C-A-N-D-Y at the base are cut outs, and the glass behind them covers multicolored, rotating lights. This lettering design is one we created, and it’s been imitated by many outfits that do restorations. Measuring 65″H x 29″W x 13″D, vendors like this one were used in movie theaters and hotel lobbies.
Do you have a vintage vending machine in your home or office? We’d love to see pictures of your rare finds!