Looking Back


There's always Time for Toys

Youngsters attending the summer program for kids at the Onoway Museum had the chance to take part in old-time activities hopscotch, blowing soap bubbles, etc. Like the toys of the last century, these activities need to be brought to light to be remembered and appreciated.


Metal toys were considered a real treasure to boys (and girls) in the 1940s and 1950s. The farm (complete with barn, silo, chicken coop, cattle shed) and farm animals provided plenty of fun moving the animals around the farm. If you were lucky enough to have a Tonka tractor and wagon, you could haul loads of ??? around the sand box or in the house.


Metal Farm
Farm Animals

A very classy farm, this one!

Different breeds of animals were available

Or on a noisier level, you could pretend you were Roy Rogers and run around shooting your cap gun at the bad guys. A toy pistol (minus the bullets), the cap gun gave off loud sharp sounds that simulated gunshots. The "caps" were rolls of paper with shock-sensitive compounds that exploded with a loud noise and smoke when the trigger was pulled.

Cap Gun

The wagon attached to a Tonka tractor is about 6 inches tall

Caps gave off smoke and gunshot-like sounds

At the other extreme was the doll and carriage to be quietly pushed around the house, in the yard or on the sidewalk.


Lucky was the young girl who received a "real" sewing machine for her birthday! Elna promoted their adult sewing machines in the 1950s by producing a miniature machine that actually sewed by using a hand crank.


                                Sewing Machine

This doll is off to her wedding!

Elna's child's sewing machine came in its own carrier case.

Toys enjoyed by children in decades past gave hours of pleasure fueled by imagination.

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Last updated: March 9, 2019