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On the Banks of Yestertyear- Horses and Stars PDF Print E-mail
Monday, December 10, 2012 11:57 AM

Although Christmas is actually a time to celebrate the birth of Jesus, to a child Christmas is synonymous with toys. And since toys are a reflection of society at any given time, they are an important part of history. We have a nice collection of toys at the museum ranging from the mid-1800s when Delphos was first settled through the mid-1900s. Many of these were probably Christmas gifts.

Among our collection are some that have special ties with Delphos because they were made by the Delphos Bending Company. This company began as The Delphos Hoop Company in 1899  and made barrel hoops. In 1912, they changed their name to the Delphos Bending Company and began manufacturing buggy and auto bows out of wood which was heated and bent. Another big change occurred in 1934 when they began making juvenile furniture and toys and hired local amateur astronomer Leslie Peltier to design them.


The toy furniture line included many items such as teeter tots, strollers, desk sets, and toy chests, all made with bent wood. Rockers featuring various characters such as Granny Goose, Peter Rabbit, and Ducky Doo were also offered, but the most popular animal throughout the decades the company was in business appears to be the horse.  They made horses on rockers, horses on springs, and horses with a swing mechanism so it would glide. The horse pictured is from the 1941 catalog and labeled “Bentwood Pony Racer.” Notice the stars on the saddle. It is undoubtedly one of Leslie Peltier’s designs.

The Christmas Tree Festival is in full swing but there is still plenty of time to visit the museum during our extended hours: 6-8 pm, Fridays, 1-4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays and 9 a.m. to noon Thursdays. Come see the trees and the toys and everything Christmas!

Last Updated on Friday, December 14, 2012 12:30 PM

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