PEZ was invented in 1927 in Vienna, Austria, as a peppermint flavored breath mint. At first, the candy was sold in rolls as “Drops,” similar to Life Savers and other hard candy. During the 1930s, brick-shaped PEZ was also sold in small tins that protected the candies when kept in the pocket. Customers could purchase refills that looked similar to the ones sold today, but the multi-colored plastic dispensers we associate with PEZ would not be introduced until after World War II.

The first "BOX Regular" PEZ dispensers appeared in 1949 and were shaped like cigarette lighters, which was in keeping with the candy’s positioning at the time as an aid to help people quit smoking. That same year, the words on the containers were changed to “BOX Patent,” and for a brief period, there was even a dispenser that had a small locking mechanism on the top. These locking dispensers are quite rare. In addition, many PEZ dispensers produced in postwar Germany bear the words “US Zone” on them.

Some of the first character dispensers were shaped like robots and Santa Claus. The bodies of these dispensers from 1955 went beyond the rectangular outline of the refills inside them. Instead, Santa was rotund, which the robots were bulky, with arms stiffly at their sides. One especially hard-to-find Regular PEZ from this era is the Golden Glow, which came with a round gold base, so that the dispenser could be displayed almost like a piece of sculpture.

To contemporary eyes, the most curious, and even disturbing, PEZ shape is the space gun from 1956, which came in a variety of colors and actually shot pieces of candy. Today, of course, it’s difficult to imagine a candy company expecting its young customers to put the muzzle of a gun in their mouths and pull the trigger in order to consume its product, but in the mid-1950s and ’60s, when the space gun was retooled as a handgun, the delivery device was all in good fun.

During the 1950s, as PEZ tried to gain a foothold in the United States, the flavors of the candy were expanded beyond a range of mints to include numerous fruits. And then came the characters: Popeye, a bunny, and a witch were among the first to be introduced at the end of the 1950s, followed by Casper the Friendly Ghost, Bozo the Clown and several Disney characters, from Mickey Mouse to Donald Duck, at the beginning of the 1960s. Many of these dispensers had character heads as well as additional character images die-cut into their sides (for example, Huey, Dewie, and Louie appeared on the sides of Donald Duck dispensers).

Today, some of the most sought PEZ dispensers are from the 1950s and ’60s. Wonder Woman and Thor dispensers are just two of the comic-book characters collected by fans, while the Psychedelic Hands dispensers from 1968, each of which holds an eyeball, are favorites of people who collect rock posters and ’60s psychedelia. In 1987, PEZ added feet its dispensers, so that’s one easy way to date a dispenser.

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]

The Wheelmen

The Wheelmen

This elegant tribute to turn-of-the-century bicycling includes memorabilia, photographs, and an index of 3140 bicyc… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Pez No Feet Mr Mystic Look Please All Pictures No ReservePez No Feet Olympic Snowman Long Cone Nose Near Mint Condition Pez No Feet Pezpal Ringmaster 3.9 Austria Wonderful Pez Mint ConditionPez No Feet Regular Black/white Mic 2.6 Austria With 2x Candy Super-mintPez With Feet Here Is The Most Wanted Colgate Skull Mint ConditionPez No Feet Micky Die Cut Stem 2.6 Austria Near Mint ConditionVtg Austria Olive Oyl Oil Popeye Pez Dispenser No Feet Red Base Painted FacePez No Feet Octopus Black Face 3.4 Austria Mint ConditionRare Vintage Pez Dispenser Cocoa Marsh Spaceman - No Feet - Made In AustriaPez Dispenser Creature From Black LagoonPez No Feet Thor 3.9 Austria Wonderful Pez Mint Condition Pez With Feet Mowgli Printed Stem Skf Arbeiterbetriebsrat Mint ConditionPez No Feet Collection With 6 Pez Mint Condition Pez No Feet Pez Part Hat From Pezpal Nurse Mint ConditionPez No Feet Yappy Dog Darkgreen 2.6 Austria Mint ConditionRare Vintage Pez Dispenser Made In Austria No Feet Santa Claus Pez No Feet Pez Parts From Pezpal Doctor/boy/mexican And Angel Near Mint Antigue 1930s Austria Pez Nickel Silver Metal Box / Tin /containerPez No Feet Pezpal Fireman With Mustache 3.4 Austria Mint ConditionPez No Feet Yappy Dog Lightgreen 3.4 Austria Mint ConditionVintage Zorro Pez No Feet AustriaPez No Feet Pezpal Mexican Boy 2.6 Austria Mint ConditionVintage Brutus Pez DispenserPez No Feet Raven Darblue Face Darkyellow Glass 3.4 Austria Mint ConditionPez No Feet Cockatoo All In Yellow 2.6 Austria Mint ConditionPez No Feet Baloo Dbp 818829 Number 1 No Copyright Pez No Feet Pinocchio Wonderful Look Please 2.6 Austria Near Mint ConditionPez No Feet Popeye Without Pin 3.4 Austria Mint ConditionVintage Tickerbell Pez DispenserPez No Feet Pezpal Doctor 3.4 Austria Near Mint ConditionPez No Feet Yappy Dog Orange 3.4 Austria Mint ConditionPez No Feet Regular Black/black 3.942683 Austria From Late 70ties Mint Vintage Pez Mr. Ugly Green Face Blue Stem 3.9 Made In Austria No FeetKarlchen Strawberry Pez Exclusive From Germany!Pez With Feet Novartis Lion Hart To Find 1950's Popeye Pez Vintage Dispenser Made In Austria Without Any FeetPez No Feet Truck A Powder Blue Hart To Find Look Please Mint ConditionVintage Pez Pony Go Round Orange Head Blue Mane White Bridle No Feet Austria 2.6Vintage Pez Candy Dispenser 1998 Pee Wee Herman Pee Wee's Playhouse Rare NewPez Presidents Of The United States Usa Volume Iv - 4 1861 - 1881 New In Box Pez 2017, Karlchen, Exclusive From A German Farmer Market, Mint On CardLot Of 72 Pez Dispensers, Ninja Turtles, Dracula, Spiderman, Despicables +2017 Northeast Gathering PacketStar Wars Large R2d2 Pez Dispenser With MusicVintage Pez William Hanna & Joseph Barbera's Mouse ( Jerry !) !!!Pez - 3 Mgm And 2 Warner Brothers CharactersPez Lot 5 Pieces Vintage No Feet MéxicoPez Old Empty Box/display Trucks Western Germany Mint ConditionM2 Haulers Chase 1958 Dodge Coe & 1960 Vw Delivery Van Pez. New Vhtf Pez No Feet Baloo Dbp 818829 Number 2 No Copyright Vintage Wonder Woman Soft Head Pez Dispenser Usa 3.8 PatentM2 Chase Hauler 1964 Ford C-950 Pez &1965 Ford Econoline Delivery VanPez No Feet 2 Different Rare Colours Plutos Mint Condition M2 Machines Chase Pez 1958 Dodge Coe & 1960 Vw Delivery Van 1 Of 500 PiecesPez No Feet Pez Parts Olympic Snowman Head Near Mint Condition M2 Machines Haulers 1964 Ford C-950 & Econoline Van Pez Chase 1 Of 500 MadePez No Feet Jiminy Cricket Look Please All Pictures He Have One Mistake!!! Less Than Jake Glow In The Dark Pez Whacky Wobbler SkullPez Japan Gundam Complete Ste All 4 New In Boxes!!! Mint ConditionVintage Elephant Pez Dispenser-no Feet-made In Austria