Cast iron toys are among the hottest toy collectibles today. Some of the best known of these were made by Kenton, an Ohio firm that operated from the 1890s to the 1950s. Their famous Kenton toys include children's savings banks, toy stoves, trains, circus caravans, cars, fire trucks, nostalgic horse-and-buggy lines, and nodders, all identified and shown here in color photographs and original catalog illustrations. Most famous of all was the authentic Gene Autry toy pistol, which was unveiled in 1937. Two million of these were sold in the first year and a half, and the company prospered from the Singong Cowboy's popularity until 1951.
This marvelously well-illustrated and researched book traces the history of Kenton from its days as a boomtown hardware manufacturer in the nineteenth century through the struggles of the two world wars. The growth of the American toy industry is reflected in the chronicle of this important company told with details from the company archives and with the engaging testimony of company employees. The story of Gene Autry's festive visit to Kenton is delightful!