Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Homestead Auctions of Norton,Ohio, USA

Wednesday, June 26, 2014
          Clouds and high humidity

Homestead Auctions of 
Norton, Ohio, USA

   I'd seen the toys and logo of Homestead Auctions many times on Liveauctioneers. However, with my current selection of many people, collectors, sellers, auctioneers, and museums, I don't always think of broadening my scope of contacts. I was looking a few days ago for Courtland Toys on Liveauctioneers, and saw that Homestead Auctions had sold a fair amount of these toys.  So that was my initiative to try and make a new contact.

   I wrote to the company, and received an answer from  Mr. Jeffrey P. Prinz. The message was short and I had Mr. Prinz's permission to write about Homestead and use their photos. Homestead Auctions has been in the business for 25 years, and is located in Norton, Ohio (USA). They have a busy schedule this summer, and their auctions contain all kinds of merchandise ranging from of course toys to antique furniture to fine Asian figures.

Homestead was originally on Liveauctioneers, but is now with Proxibid.

   For those who may not know, Liveauctioneers and Proxibid are internet websites that allow people to bid online for items that are up for auction. This process has of course evolved with the Internet and the computer. Even the Internationally-renowned auction companies also auction their merchandise in this manner. Of course, people can still visit the particular auction in person, but the Internet has made bidding and auctions an international business and broaden the audience (bidders) to many more than in times past. These companies have strong security, safeguards, and scrutiny to ensure that all bidding is fair and honest, and and everything is perfectly legal and legitimate.

   I was going to present a range of Courtland toys, but I kept seeing the same truck and car body many times but with different design and lithography on the outside. Form this, I decided that for the introductory presentation of Homestead Auctions, I would do a post on all of the the same truck bodies, but with different outside lithography.  This particular is about 7"  (178 mm) and had lithography over what I assumed is tin. There are black rubber tires that are moved by a wind-up and friction mechanism.

    There are 2 things that caught my attention when I was screen-capturing and looking at these particular toys. 

The first is the address on the boxes.

Courtland Manufacturing Co., Inc., 
Camden, N.J.

A simple address like this always reminds me young children who write to 
Santa Claus, The North Pole. Of course, a country like Canada will take the letter and send a reply during the happy season of Christmas. But at one time, you could in fact send a letter or a return item to a company, and just with such simple information the toy would find its way there.

The second interesting thing was a warrant on the wind-up mechanism. If the mechanism failed to work, you could simply mail it to the company, and they would either repair the mechanism or replace it.

Try to find a guarantee like that today!

"Founded 1944, Camden, New Jersey / USA by Walter Reach. Walter started out producing die-cut cardboard toys and turned to tin after the war. In 1947 its sales exceeded 1.5 million dollars, had 600 workers and had moved production to Philadelphia. Production ceased in 1954."*

*Brief history courtesy of

What I like about the toy is the graphics and late 1940's-early 1950's style of drawing. The typography and the characters are so "retro"!

I like how the driver and passenger appear both in the front through the windshield, as well as on the sides of the car.

It's  not unusual for a company to manufacture different designs using the same frame. If you look at the posts of Tootsietoy Grahams, or Hubley Airflows, you will see that they to have used a similar production technique. I'm sure this offered the children a better selection of a similarly-designed toy, while at the same time, kept production costs down.

Thanks for dropping by,
and have a great part of the day or night,
wherever you may be.

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