Toys

Forty years ago, Cold War technology and memories of a still-recent World War II combined to make a plastic paradise of great toys—which wistful baby boomers can now revisit.

Fifty years ago these rough-and-ready tin soldiers were sold from bins cheap and by the handful. Today collectors are seeking them for their bright, simple vitality.

Commercially made metal toy soldiers date back to the late eighteenth century, when German tinsmiths began casting two-dimensional or “flat” figures of the sort immortalized by Hans Christian Andersen in “The Steadfast Tin Soldier.” European firms went on to Read more >>
The roller skate was born centuries ago in Europe when small boys tied wooden spools to their shoes. Read more >>
Salem, Massachusetts, is rooted deep in the stony New England heritage of America. The capacious and functional houses that ringed the common remain, superbly maintained reminders of their prosperous Yankee history. Read more >>

Animals a-coming two by two: Up went the lid and you could stuff them in, Noah and all. Or you could throw them at Brother. A toy is pretty adaptable.