Sunday, December 21, 2014
I never had a toy train when I was a kid, but I love toys - especially vintage toys! And if I had oodles of spare cash, I would be mighty tempted to collect trains like the ones seen in todays photos. Which, by the way, were provided to GDB through the generosity of Ken Martinez, who snapped the pictures at the Sacramento State Railroad Museum. I have to get up there someday.
Wow, look at that setup! Ken tells us that this is a Lionel tinplate roundhouse that could be expanded by adding sections. It's fantastic. I'll bet that when this was produced (I dunno, the 1930's?), only a rich kid would have had anything as nice as this. Any idea what those yellow things are supposed to be at the ends of the tracks (with the red lights on top)?
Look at this beautiful Lionel power station accessory, embossed and lithographed with bright colors. I'll bet Ward Kimball had one of these (his collection of toy trains was legendary, and I believe that when it was auctioned after his death, it fetched over 5 million dollars). I love the details like the cows, lamp posts, etc. It's the toylike quality that I find so appealing.
Now THIS is the kind of thing that I would have wanted to build! A bridge spans a chasm where a river (controlled by a dam) provides power for the townsfolk. The papier maché mountains are wonderful. The lights actually light up! There's even an airplane up above the hills. And it appears as if the houses get smaller as they go up - the same forced perspective that you find at Disneyland.
MANY THANKS to Ken Martinez for sharing these neat pictures with us!