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Classic Toys: Jack-in-the-Box

Aug 04, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  2 Comments

History of the Jack-in-the-Box Toy The Jack-in-the-Box has been one of the most enduring toys throughout the centuries. There are many stories and theories circulating about the origin of this classic toy. One is that it was popularized in the 15th and 16th centuries, based on the very popular “Punch” puppet featured in the “Punch

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The History of Toy Robots

Jul 15, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  4 Comments

People have been building mechanical figures as far back as ancient Greek times. In 1206, a Muslim engineer and inventor called Al-Jazari built what is believed to be the first programmable humanoid robots. They were musicians that played instruments while floating in a boat on a lake to entertain royal guests. Inventors continued to experiment

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Classic Toys: The Hula Hoop

Jul 07, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  3 Comments

A “Hula Hoop” is a toy made from a plastic tube that can be twirled around a person’s waist, arms, legs or neck. The idea of the Hula Hoop has been around for a very long time and its massive popularity assures it will always be a favorite form of entertainment. The first plastic Hula

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Classic Toys: The Yo-Yo

May 12, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  No Comments

The Yo-Yo Craze Lives On The Yo-Yo is considered to be one of the oldest toys in history, second only to the doll. The oldest surviving example was found in Greece, dating from 500 B.C., although its origins date to much earlier. The yo-yo was a commonly used toy in ancient Greece and was made

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Classic Toys: Lincoln Logs

Apr 30, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  1  Comment

The History of Lincoln Logs Building Sets John Lloyd Wright of Illinois introduced Lincoln Logs to the marketplace in the mid-1920s. His inspiration for the new toy had come from witnessing the construction of the Imperial Hotel in Tokyo. The hotel was constructed to be earthquake-proof and used interlocking timbers for the foundation. It had

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The History of Silly Putty

Apr 02, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  2 Comments

One of the most enduring toys of our times – Silly Putty – wasn’t designed to be in the hands of kids. Its inventor was attempting to respond to a challenge made by the US government. During World War II, raw materials like rubber became harder to obtain. The Japanese had invaded Asian countries were

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Classic Toys: The Slinky

Mar 19, 2009 |  Retro Staff |  No Comments

Simple, Fun and Timeless Invented by Richard James, a US Navy engineer, the loveable Slinky toy has been entertaining us since 1945. In 1943, Richard was employed at the William Cramp and Sons shipyard in Philadelphia when he was working with metal springs while trying to find a way to hold delicate instruments steady onboard

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