Toy World

An homage to toys…

What’s in the Box?
What’s in the toy box?
What’s in the box?
With the big brass locks?

There’s a one-eyed ted
And a ball that’s red,
Some building bricks
And a clock that ticks,
A plastic boat
And a duck that floats,
A wind-up car
And a silver star,
A doll that cries
And a plane that flies.

That’s what’s in the toy box!
That’s what’s in the box!

I received most of the toys in my childhood while living in Brooklyn, but I learned how to play with them after my family moved to New Jersey. Maybe I just didn’t find the time in New York, maybe stickball and Skelley kept me outdoors all the time. Whatever the reason, my later childhood years were all about fun and games here in the Game State. And there’s history here.

Everyone knows that the spaces on the Monopoly game are named for Atlantic City streets. But did you know that the inventor of the spring-loaded mechanism found on pinball machines lived and worked in Jersey City?

Or that Lionel – the biggest name in model railroading – had factories in Hillside and Irvington?

Or that one of the country’s largest makers of tinplate mechanical toys was located just off Broad Street in downtown Burlington?

Or that a factory in the Chambersburg neighborhood of Trenton earned the nickname “World’s Largest Doll House” because it manufactured hundreds of thousands of dolls each year?

Toy World, a fun-filled exhibition is currently wowing the crowds at the New Jersey State Museum, focusing on the little known stories of the important role New Jersey played in the history of the American toy industry.

Be transported to back to another era in the fun NEW exhibition spotlighting the history and innovation of toy manufacturing in New Jersey.

New Jersey State Museum, Trenton Through April 30

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