This blog discusses old toys from the early 1920's to the end of the 1950's. All kinds of topics are discussed.
The time span was the greatest period for "hands-on" toys, where a young child could actually go outside and play for hours at a time.
You can see the elegance but simple design of these toys. It was a time when huge machines, and people made and finished toys by hand.
The era has long passed, but many of the toys are still around, and that is what I would like to share.
Monday, December 15, 2014
Some Exceptional Gong Bell Toys with a Sad Story
Tuesday, December 16.2014 Mostly cloudy, seasonally mild temperature
Some Exceptional Gong Bell Toys
with a Sad Story (but with a happyending)
I was browsing on the Internet, when I found some exceptional Gong toys on Liveauctioneers. I was going to write in my usual cheerful manner, but when I went to look for images on Wikipedia, my mood changed. I have to write that my opinions (rarely do I try to have any),are my own and do not reflect in any way on the many people who help me out.
Once upon a time, there were 60,000,000 American Bison or buffalo as they are more commonly known as. I once read that if you stood on the side of their path that the buffalo followed on their annual migration south, it would take 3 days for all of the buffalo to move past you. Imagine standing by a 12 lane superhighway 5 mph or 1.67 kmp. The estimated number (fro Wikipedia) was said to have been estimated before 1492, the year Christopher Columbus discovered America. By 1890, there were 790 of these fine animals left,and in 2006, 360,000.
I'm a romantic at heart, so I've believed in good triumphing over evil, crying while reading the book or watching the movie The Last of The Mohicans by James Fenaimore Cooper, or watching the Movie For Whom The Bells Tool, as Gary Cooper, an American in the International Bragades sends Ingrid Bergman off, as he prepares to fight Francisco Franco's Fasists at a mountain pass and knowingly will die.* (Of course, the crying was when I was a kid!).
I decided to present the sad part of today's post first, and finish off with the good part.
Below are 3 illustrative maps from Wikipedia. They present the exceptional disappearance of this fine native American animal,almost brought to extinction in the blink of an eye in (508 years) on earths' billion year history!
Naturally, the bison was glorified like the America Eagle as a persona or symbol of America in terms of strength,yet rarely did the country or its elected representatives ever do something to save the animal during the first 500 years since Columbus landed on the shores of North America.
Occasionally I will write about cast iron toys commenting on how parts of them were nickel-plated.
Nowadays, there are no nickel five-cent coins or nickels s they are commonly called,nor are there any coppers or 1 cent coins made of copper anymore in the USA> AS for Canada, we don;t have "coppers" anymore-period!
This image has always stayed with me in my mind. It's a terrible nightmare of what mankind could do. Americans slaughtered these animals for their tongues or hides, and left the carcasses to rot. International dignitaries would be taken to the Great Plains of to shoot hundreds of these animals for sport, and again the dead animals rotted.
I used to collect stamps and my favourites were the American and Canadian commemorative issues from the early 20th century and into the early 1940's. The issues commemorated (celebrated) special historic periods or specific dates that both countries heralded as milestones in their early and later development.
There were only 2 listings from Bertoia Auctions of these toys. The 2 toys are most probably the same toy.However,as I was working with them in my photo-editing software, I noticed that one buffalo had more hair or fur than the other(the bottom one). Perhaps it was simply abetter casting or early casting in the years of production.
Both toys were excellently photographed,and I really like the high camera angle for both to best illustrate the features of the toy,especially the blue-coloured bell.
And as for the happy ending (of sorts)the numbers of
North American Bison as of 2000 were 360,000, as I wrote above. This of course is a far cry from the estimated 60,000,000 in 1492, but much better than the 790 in 1890.