Toys are objects for the imagination, the physical things children manipulate in the real world as their minds race with fantastic scenarios and secret adventures. Toys don’t have to be complicated in design or made of expensive materials. Indeed, the best toys are often the simplest, used way past their breaking points, which makes collecting vintage toys in good condition a challenge.

One of the most popular categories of vintage toys encompasses toys that move. Pull toys on wheels are powered by the user, while wind-up toys, which are sometimes called clockwork toys for their internal similarity to the movements in clocks, walk, crawl, or roll along a floor or flat surface when cranked or wound with a special key. Friction toys are propelled forward when a spring in the toy is wound backwards, while battery-operated toys are powered by cylindrical cells that are, as every parent knows, usually not included with the toy when it’s purchased.

There then are doll-like toys, but please don’t call them dolls. We’re talking action figures here, from G.I. Joes to “Star Wars” figures and playsets. Other examples of figural toys include My Little Ponies (collectors go for the first-generation ones made between 1992 and 1995) and tin robots (Lilliput, Atomic Robot Man, and others made in mid-20th-century Japan are especially rare).

Building toys such as Lincoln Logs, Erector sets, and LEGOs have long been popular with kids, as have toys targeted to toddlers, and even infants, from companies such as Fisher-Price, Playmobil, and Playskool.

Then there are toys that give a child’s imagination a kickstart, most notably the playsets made by Marx and other toy manufacturers. At the other end of the play spectrum are toys that are positively elegant in their simplicity yet require a certain amount of dexterity and skill to enjoy, the yo-yos being a good example of this type of toy.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Museum of Childhood

Museum of Childhood

Embrace your inner child on this website from the Victoria and Albert Museum, filled with high-quality images and i… [read review or visit site]

Gallery of Monster Toys

Gallery of Monster Toys

Raymond Castile's homage to vintage monster toys from the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Browsable by decade and m… [read review or visit site]



Clubs & Associations

Most watched eBay auctions    

Antique 1920s German Tin-litho Wind-up Toonerville Trolley Fontaine Fox ToyRare 1900's Lehmann "shenandoah Airship #766 Tin Litho Wind Up 7 1/2" No ReserveRare Antique Brass Steam Tractor Toy Or Salesman Sample1936 Donald Duck Disney Wind-up Race Car #5 Tin Litho Toy J. Schneider Co. Usa1936 Donald Duck Disney Wind-up Race Car #5 Tin Litho Toy J. Schneider Co. Usa 31954 Marx Linemar Japan Rare Chevrolet 2 Door Friction Tin Litho 11" No Reserve1900s Germany Tin Wind Up Flying Zeppelin Airship GunthermannMarx Disney Mickey Mouse Meteor Train Wind Up Tin W/key And Track1900s Germany Tin Wind-up Gunthermann Musical Bear Orchestra1930 Hubley Cast Iron Studebaker Coupe W/spare 7" All Original Car Very Rare Motorcycle Ingap Italy 1920/30. (no Germany )Bandai Ford Fairlane 500 Convertible 1957 Orig.box Tinplate Japan Tin Toy CarAntique Kenton Cast Iron Toy Overland Circus Wagon Horses Drivers & Bear1936 Mickey Mouse Disney Wind-up Race Car #5 Tin Litho Toy J. Schneider Co. Usa John Deere Eska 10 Pedal TractorVintage 1964 Palitoy Action Man Talking And Working With Boxes1920's Tin Wind-up Fischer Toy, Polar Bear Driving Circus Clown On Cart - German1900s Germany Tin Merry Go-round Airplanes And Zeppelins Airships CarouselStanley Steamer Live Steam Engine Working CarJapan Tin Cadillac Tn Nomura Nikko Friction Convertible 13 InchCast-iron (white Boy) Machanical Coin Bank 4 1/2 Rare " Tall Lot 130Cast Iron "i Always Did 'spise A Mule" Mechanical Bank Original Antique C1880'sOriginal Vintage Dino-robot Sh Horikawa Made In Japan, Battery Operated With BoxVtg Original Daktari Playset Marx 1967 120 + Pieces W/ Box Parts Jungle JimVintage 1950's Toy Johnson Seahorse 25 Outboard Boat Motor Made In Japan As-is1950s Tonka Fire Dept Metro Rescue Squad Van Vintage Toy Truck1950s Tps Japan Tin Roller Skating Clown Wind Up Toy In Box Excellent! LinemarRare! Antique 1930s Woods Girard Model Wind-up Mechanical Toy Monoplane AirplaneBandai 1956 Ford Japan Tin Friction ConvertibleAntique Victorian C.1900 Singer Child's Metal Toy Cast Iron Sewing Machine~worksVintage Japan Battery Operated Tomiyama Flying Circus Tin Toy With Circus BearExtremely Rare Pelham Puppet Bank Manager Minty Bright Unused Stunning 1968 Star Trek Dome Lunchbox Aladdin Must See !!!Vintage Signal Cannon, Harpoon Gun, Custom Made2 Vintage Tin-litho Wind-up Toys Marx Rollover Plane & West Germany Rocket Swing1936 Donald Duck Disney Wind-up Race Car #5 Tin Litho Toy J. Schneider Co. Usa 2Marx Western Town Gunsmoke Playset Complete With Instructions Vintage Antique Steelcraft Gendron Murray Garton Amf Bmc Vintage Pedal Car Collection1950's Hubley Western Cap Gun Set With Fancy Holsters & Belt No Reserve1903 Lehmann German Tin Naughty Boy Car Vis-a-vis Auto Excellent Working Toy!1930's Rare!! Pre-war "k.t." Japan Airflow Tin Litho Wind Up Car 6" No ReserveOld Tin German Handstand Clown *vintage Wind-up Germany Circus ToyOriginal 1930s Marx Wind-up.. Old Mack Tank Truck Made In New York City.. Usa. Popeye Wind Up Juggling Toy With Olive Tin Original Very Scarce LinemarMajor Matt Mason 'leadworks' Repro - Mint On Card 6" Spaceman1900s Germany Tin Wind-up Gunthermann Cat Chasing Mouse1920s Lehmann German Tin Brennabor Truly Rare Auto W/driver & Electric Lights!1976 Mego Planet Of The Apes Pota Fortress Playset Brand New Unused Afa Graded2 Antique Authentic 1920s Cast Iron Red Sedan Toy Automobile Cars, Nr1936 Donald Duck Disney Wind-up Race Car #5 Tin Litho Toy J. Schneider Co. Usa 5Marklin Steam Engine 19241959 Tonka Platform Stake Truck Original Vintage Farm Toy Ford Bronze LumberHubley Cast Iron Chrysler Sedan With Electric Headlights No Reserve (dakotapaul)Vintage Silver Pigeon Scooter - Tin Friction - Made In Japan1960's Japan United Air Lines Dc-7 Mainliner Toy AirplaneMarx Battleground Figures/ Vehicles Set #31945 Unique Art L'il Abner Dogpatch Band Tin Wind-up 8 Piece Toy Parts LotAntique Toy Truck Marx Rare Linemar Japan Donald Duck Climbing Fireman Wind Up Tin Toy WorkingNice! Kenton Cast Iron Nickel Grill Sedan W/ House Trailer No Res (dakotapaul)