Field & Stream Ad
When the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker was introduced in 1981, Weber advertised the new product in magazines and on television. This print ad ran in Field & Stream magazine in April 1981.
Father and son have already smoked a turkey and a ham, and they now contemplate smoking those fish, too. Mom looks on as she works on a quilt.
The photo in this ad is the same one used on the cover of the 1981-1988 WSM owner’s manual. A slightly different photo was used on the original WSM box art.
I suspect the WSM in this photo is a prototype or pre-production model. If you compare the WSM in this photo to today’s WSM, you’ll notice some interesting differences:
- It has a smooth, non-textured steel access door. Today’s WSM has a textured aluminum door.
- It has a horizontal line pressed into the door just below the knob. Today’s WSM also has vertical lines along each edge of the door.
- The access door is taller than on today’s WSM.
- The screws for the cooking grate brackets are just a few inches apart, meaning that the cooking grates are very close together. Today’s WSM has more vertical space between cooking grates.
This television commercial for the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker dates back to the early 1980s. It plays off the same outdoors theme featured in the Field & Stream magazine ad above. Thanks to Weber Sweden for posting this video to YouTube.
Washington Post Article Mentions WSM…Sort Of
On September 28, 1983, The Washington Post published an article about smoker equipment that discusses the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker, but does not actually mention it by name.
The article describes the smoker as tall and narrow, including a special pan for water, and coming in two sizes: 14-1/2″ diameter for about $100 and 18-1/2″ diameter for about $120. Sadly, they published a photo of a Weber kettle instead of the WSM and called it “the Weber smoker.”
Thanks to Irving Birkner for providing this article to TVWB.
The scanned images of the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker ad are Copyright Weber-Stephen Products LLC and are included here for historical illustration.
The scanned images of the Washington Post article are Copyright The Washington Post Company and are included here for historical illustration.
The Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker Commercial is Copyright Weber-Stephen Products LLC.