Originally Posted by reinergirl
It's the grill off an old heater. I just saw one for sale recently......
Yep, inside would be a ceramic "block" that the gas flame heats up, and the heat is radiated out into the room.
Most houses down south had one like it in the bathroom, to provide heat while taking a bath.
There would have been bigger ones in the rest of the rooms in the house.
They were quite popular in Texas where it didn't get very cold in the winter. We had them in our first house in Longview, Texas back in the '60s