Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Great Toys from Louis Marx & Co.!

Louis Marx & Co. Has been long forgotten by the average person. Most people do remember some of the individual toys that Marx made, like the original Big Wheel and Rock'em Sock'em Robots, but not the company.

Wikipedia has a comprehensive history of the Marx company and its toys. Marx began in the 1920's and ended in 1978. Some of the toys that were handed down to me from my dad were Marx. Early on Marx mostly made tin toys and trains. Their logo had a railroad crossing sign as the X in Marx, so I guess in the beginning they specialized in model trains. Then in the 50's, 60's and 70's the were famous for their Johnny West and Best of the West action figures. I have a bunch of my Johnny West, Sheriff Garrett and Sam Cobra that I need to take pictures of for a future post. As for now, if you want to see some Best of The West toys, visit the Vintage Toy Room site.

One of my favorite toys as a kid was the Marx Dinosaur Mountain that is pictured at the left. I have better pictures of it that I will eventually highlight on my Toys2Remember website (When & if I ever get that built). This was the largest dinosaur set they released. I think it was one of the later sets, but it is pretty hard to find. The plastic mountains come apart in 4 pieces and there is a plastic "wood" bridge and vinyl mat to set it all on. Of course there are also a bunch of dinosaurs, cavemen and trees. I even used to play "Land of the Lost" with this by putting some of my other figures in this set to fight with the dinosaurs. What fun!

The pictures below are couple of the older O scale railroad pieces. We used to have a train, but I'm not sure what happened to it. It's too bad that Marx quit making toys because in my opinion, everything they had was great. Stay tuned for a post on Best of the West and one about some of the unusual games by Marx.

Have you seen any Marx exhibits at museums? My Stormcloud horse for my Chief Cherokee is in a traveling exhibit that began at the Indianapolis Children's Museum! There are also some museums dedicated exclusively to Marx. A good one with an online presence is the Marx Museum of Glendale West Virginia. Did you have any Marx toys? If so, what was your favorite? Do you still have it? If not, I bet you wish you did.

Marx definitely made some great Toys 2 Remember!

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If you have read anything in this post that interests you or helped you bring back memories, I would love to hear from you. Please comment or send me an email.

I have many other toys that I can write about and show pictures of. Please comment or email if you have a favorite toy form the 60's, 70's, or 80's that you would like me to post about. If your favorite toy is before the 60's or after the 80's, I will still give it a shot. I have many of my Dad's old toys, and I know about the more recent ones too.

This blog is for you. It's for everyone. Together, lets talk about the Toys 2 Remember! Thanks!!

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6 comments:

Kitty girl said...

OMG! That was my favorite toy growing up! I had the same exact set except the mountains were gray. My father glued the vinyl mat to a board so I could play better with them all! I honestly don't rememeber what happened to it. I miss it!

Helen said...

I was cleaning out my closets today and came across a Gimbels box filled with small plastic animals in boxes labeled "Wild Animals" and "Louis Marx & Co." My grandmother collected these for me when I was growing up. She must have kept them at her house for when I visited, because most of the toys are still in very good shape. My mother gave them to me when my grandmother passed away 12 years ago. I've had them in the closet ever since, but never thought to look them up until now. It's quite a blast to see what else that company made.

Anonymous said...

The army men that they put out were the greatest. I had buckets of them.... probably a few remain buried in my parents back yard. The Dinosaurs were awesome. The sabretooth was my favorite. No-one else did one. I wish I could find them again without someone trying to jack up the price by calling them "collectable". They were simple toys with great memories. I found this site because I was looking to what little green army men were still out there. Saddened to see the company is no more. Another victim of video games....

Anonymous said...

I still have a train set from Louis Marx & Co, the train is older than I, so I did not know the history. I guess, it was from the 50's. But it still runs, although some pieces are missing. What a great item which is not appreciated much by the current generation.

Anonymous said...

When I was a very young child (about 3 or 4), my Uncle Jim gave me a green plastic sea monster toy figure. I named it "Ugga Bugga" and took it everywhere. I will be 50 years old on June 17th and have ONE toy from my childhood which is this particular toy. My Uncle Jim died last month and I went to my nightstand to get Ugga and put him in my purse to take with me to the funeral and his foot fell off! Guess it dry-rotted or something ..who knows (i'm damaged!) but on the bottom of Ugga's foot is:

LouisMarx & Clark & Co., Inc.

and the letters: MGMLXIII
OR
MCMLXIII

I haven't found the toy online and would love to know more about this toy I cherish still. hb007

Anonymous said...

I still have the covered wagon set, and of course the cowboy on the palomino! Could never part with them, and never shared ...afraid someone would break my favorite toy! Jen