April 26, 2011


Recently I purchased a collection of antique toys, board games and children’s furniture. I’ve always loved the beautiful graphics in children’s books and on toys, and some of these items in this collection are wonderful. Wooden blocks with brilliant artwork, tin wind-up toys with complex mechanical action, and adorable doll furniture, detailed in wood cut-outs and designs are just a portion of the collection.

One of the most unusual toys is this tin toy made by the German toy manufacturer Lehmann. Patented in 1895, the tin lithographed beetle will walk and flap its’ wings when you wind it up. One recently sold on Ebay for $300+! Of course, since then, several others have come up for auction and sold, but not for the high price the first one went for!

There are also several sets of wooden puzzle blocks. The set pictured here is of the alphabet with pictures for each letter. Look at the block with the letter “Q”…what the heck is a “quagga”? It’s not in my dictionary, so I looked it up on Wikipedia and found that it is an extinct subspecies of the zebra. The only one photographed live was in 1870, so that helps to date this set, probably late nineteenth century.

Antique toys were popular with children for two main reasons-the brightly colored lithography and the movements they made when wound up. These are also the same reasons they are so sought after by today’s collectors. If your passion is antique toys~please come and check out my selection. Priced modestly, you’ll find something to add to your collection at Vintage Gal Antiques.

Unusual tin wind-up beetle toy

Child's Minature Doll Oak Dresser

What the heck is a Quagga?