It's STILL hot. Wondering how Grandma had a cool drink on a hot afternoon?
General Electric introduced the Monitor Top refrigerator in 1927. It was one of the first affordable refrigerators made for use in homes. G.E. designed the refrigerator with the compressor assembly, which gave off a lot of heat, mounted above the cabinet. It was called "Monitor Top" because of its resemblance to the gun turret on the 1860s ironclad warship, U.S.S. Monitor.
The basic design of the Monitor Top was the same until 1936. They cost about $300 and over a million were produced. Today a Monitor Top can sell for anywhere from $500 to $3,000, depending on condition and a fully restored model can sell for $3,800 or more.
The website, AntiqueAppliances.com says that "Many of the Monitor Top cabinets were fitted with a foot pedal that would let you open the door with a touch of the foot. This came in really handy when you had just come from the hen house with your arms loaded with fresh eggs! Just a touch of your foot and the door popped open, usually busting your knee in the process. For this reason, we refer to this nifty contraption as a 'knee buster.' "
Find more old refrigerator prices here and in Kovels on Antiques and Collectibles Price Guide 2011.