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.
Wednesday, January 31, 2018
Fernand (Ferdinand) Martin Toys
Wednesday, January 31, 2018 Sunny with Cloudy Periods -12 C 10.4 F
Fernand Martin was a French toy manufacturer who started up around the 1880's. His toys
were mechanical wind-ups, and were mostly all about people. The body and frame were manufactured from tin and metal,while the exterior of the figure was usually made of material.
When any of Fernand Martin's toys were wound up, they would go through different motions depending on what their profession was. A street-sweeper would sweep, an acrobat would articulate in an acrobatic movement, and a fisherman would raise his rod to bring the fish closer to him. The toys were small in size and ranged from 5"-7 1/2" ( 127 mm - 191 mm)
c. 1903, "Le Cake-Walk!!!!," depicts woman in dance competition with knee and hands up,
the winners won a cake as a prize. Length 5.5"(141 mm)
c. 1905, "Le Gymnaste," rare Martin design, depiction of gymnast in a formal uniform at bars, leans back and forth when activated working his way down the bars. Hard to find. length: 14.5" 367 mm.
"Le Gentleman Khaki", one of two figures that
represent men from the Boer War (South Africa),
dressed in cloth, holding gun, with helmet.
Length: 5.25" 13.5 cm
Fernand Martin, cloth dressed painted tin figure sits on tin rock - clockwork mechanism imparts action: he bends down and turns and pulls up fish. 7 1/2" ( 190 mm) high
c. 1891, "Les Boxeurs," Very early Martin, rubber band mechanism, only a few known to exist of this toy, arms and bodies jiggle as if in combat, there are reportedly no examples retaining original arms. Length: 5.25" (133 mm)
c. 1898, "Le Petit Decrotteur," this early Martin represents the early street vendor profession,
when activated arms shift to motion shoe shining. Length: 5.5" (140 mm)
France, tin figure with key wind operation, billed as the Culbuteur,
includes original box, actions feature rotations. Height (7 1/2" 191 mm)
Attributed to Martin, depiction of two children playing a fun game of leap frog around a tree stump. Whimsy theme and design. Height: 5.75" (146 mm)