Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Schott & Co. Catalogue for the Fall of 1898

Wednesday, September 17, 2014
          Partly sunny and seasonally cooler

The Schott & Co. Catalogue
for the Fall of 1898

 I just received another catalogue. This time it's from Cabin Creek CD's who sell both on ebay, and their own website. The Schott & Co. was located in Chicago, Illinois (USA), and sold all kinds of merchandise by catalogue. At the end of the 19th century and even for the 30 years to follow, most people listed in rural area of the United States. There weren't the excellent highways that one travel on today, and it was the railroad that meandered through the country linking people with the big cities on the Eastern part of the United States, as well as a few on the Western coast.

  I tried to find some information on the company, but came up "empty handed". I will try in the future to see if I can find something.  As for  Cabin Creek CD's,  they produce an excellent collection of old catalogues of all sorts of merchandise from "way back then". What I liked about the Cd that I received was the fact that the scanning quality was excellent. I did have to adjust the exposure, but the images were straight, clean, and contained nice detail. I only selected pages that contained toys. Of course, As I mentioned there were other types of merchandise within the catalogue.

Below is a straightforward screen capture from the PDF (Adobe Acrobat) file 
that the catalogue was formatted with.

I didn't do anything to it but to add the "usual" copyright notice at the bottom 
and the watermark on the image.

The image below was adjusted with a photo-editing software.
I left some of the aged colour in, and I removed a fair amount of the back page 
from appearing through the front page.

What's interesting to note are several things:

1. Most old catalogues do not mention the name of the manufacture of toys. 
As such, it's somewhat harder to match up a catalogue illustration
 and description with the actual toy.

2. So many different toys were made that it is also hard to match up the 
catalogue illustration with the actual manufacturer's toy.

3. When I placed the Liveauctioneers search results for some of the toys on this page,
I only actually found 1 match.  Many of the companies at the end of the 19th and early 20th century produced toys that were very similar to one another. There wasn't the threat of copyrights and design infringements are there are today. 

Ive never seen the "steel kicking frogs", the "steel galloping horse", or the  steel sulky" ever.
I'll be searching for them though. It's much harder to cross-reference (match up) catalogue illustrations with the actual sold toys at auction when you don't have the manufacturer's name. The manufacturer may have had a different description for the toys that what the catalogue seller (in this case Schott & Company) had in mind.

Once again the 3 horse toys below are toys that I have never seen. 
I didn;t even know that steel toys existed at that time in the USA. Perhaps these toys were imported from Europe, or perhaps, I have to do more research! These are certainly fine-looking toys.

Finally a catalogue page that has toys that I can say that I have seen. Even though, the large-sized stove below does not mention the manufacturers' name, the fact that the model names are on the stoves or ranges as they are called helps. Notice that the names are Prize, Rival, and Eclipse.
What's always interesting to note are the accessories that could be purchased or might have came with the original stoves.

What;s also of interest below are the Bell Toys. I've written about these, and for sure could easily match them up, These are most likely Gong Bell toys by the same name (Gong) Eventually, another company called Watrous purchase the Gong Bell Company or vice-versa.

Ah! Another catalogue page that I would most likely be able to cross-reference with actual cast iron banks. The iron banks on the left are called "fancy banks". Today, they are called "mechanical banks. I've written about these most-interesting banks before. A lever is coked (tension), a coin is placed somewhere, and a simple movement, o r a series of several movement happens to the figures of the bank. Eventually, the coin is placed in a safe part of the bank, and only a screwdriver, or removing the bottom plug will allow the "saver" to access the money.

Boy, am I having great luck! Just within the last several days, I wrote about a Weeden Steam Engine. The one that I wrote about was produced about in the 1910's or the 1920's ,but looked much similar to the "upright" engine on the left.  These toys are actual working models and would operate by adding a fuel to the bottom of the boiler and having the water turn to steam, The steam in turn, would create pressure that would be released to operate the large wheel.

I've seen some of the wooden war cruiser below,and am always amazed. They were made from wood, with lithographed paper carefully glued over the wood. The fact that a true antique wooden toy could survive over a century plus, is amazing!

If anyone reading this post actually has any of the toys on this page, 
I'd be happy to post them on a post if you sent me the photos.

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

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