Visit Your Local PBS Station PBS Home PBS Home Programs A-Z TV Schedules Watch Video Donate Shop PBS Search PBS


Support ANTIQUES ROADSHOW by supporting public television! Give Today
  • SHOP
  • Appraisals

    1950s Animal & Wild West Toys

    Appraised Value:


    Appraised on: August 13, 2005

    Appraised in: Los Angeles, California

    Appraised by: Andy Ourant

    Category: Toys & Games

    Episode Info: Los Angeles, Hour 2 (#1008)

    Originally Aired: February 27, 2006

    slideshow IMAGE: 1 of 2 Next 

    More Like This:

    Form: Animal
    Period / Style: 1950s, 20th Century
    Value Range: $2,000

    Related Links:

    Understanding Our Appraisals
    Useful tips to keep in mind when watching ANTIQUES ROADSHOW


    Appraisal Video: (2:57)


    Appraised By:

    Andy Ourant
    Dolls, Toys & Games

    Appraisal Transcript:
    GUEST: I brought some little figurines that were given to my children from this little old gal. She fell in love with my kids, and she said, um, "I have some toys for your kids, um, that were my brothers, and I want to give them to you."

    APPRAISER: Okay.

    GUEST: They were in a box, and she just gave them to me.

    APPRAISER: Now, have they played with them?

    GUEST: Not yet. I was going to give them the toys, 'cause I thought they were just like little plastic, you know, toys, but when I started to look at them, I noticed that they were really old.

    APPRAISER: Okay.

    GUEST: So, um, they'll get a chance to play with them, but I'd have to be there to watch them.

    APPRAISER: Okay. Well, they are in fantastic condition, and there are basically two different manufacturers here of what we call composition figures. In the early 20th century, there were two major manufacturers in Germany that started producing these figures. And the first one I want to show you is Elastolin. And the second one I want to show you is Lineol. Now, Lineol and Elastolin, up until World War II, made a lot of soldiers, and before the war started, they did... exported in this country, but after the war, they weren't allowed to make soldiers anymore. So they've really focused on making zoos and cowboys and Indians, Western sets. All these figures are postwar, 1950s. Now, they're made out of wood pulp and glue.

    GUEST: Mm-hmm.

    APPRAISER: So that means if they get wet, or a lot of wear, they're going to break very easily.

    GUEST: Yes.

    APPRAISER: So, these really haven't been played with. And that's the key to collecting these type of things is condition.

    GUEST: Yeah.

    APPRAISER: And look how, you know, the hand painting, like the zebra. All the stripes. That's all done by hand. Just this elephant, which is wonderful modeling, great detail, would be about $200.

    GUEST: Wow.

    APPRAISER: Now, he's a pretty desirable animal. In general, most of the zoo animals are $50, $60 apiece. That's a significant amount when you start adding it all up. But my real favorite is this whole Western scene.

    GUEST: Mm-hmm.

    APPRAISER: Looking at the details, the cowboys and the Indians. This wonderful teepee. It's flat, but it has a lot of dimensional detail. And you've got a peace pipe smoker, and...

    GUEST: Baby in...

    APPRAISER: Yup, and the baby. Exactly. In Germany, they were very interested in the Wild West. And so, these were popular in Germany.

    GUEST: Yeah.

    APPRAISER: As well as being exported to this country to be sold. The teepee might be $50, $60. The totem pole is, you know, $50, $60. Some of these figures-- each one is, you know, $50, $75 apiece, because the condition is so great.

    GUEST: Mm-hmm.

    APPRAISER: I believe there's like 17 animals here. And then all these great, wonderful figures, and all the backdrops, everything. Easily, at auction, it would be $2,000 for everything.

    GUEST: Yeah. Yeah, that's good.

    APPRAISER: That's good.

    GUEST: That's good. Yeah, that's really good.

    WGBH This website is produced for PBS Online by WGBH Boston. ©1997-2015 WGBH Educational Foundation.
    ANTIQUES ROADSHOW is a trademark of the BBC and is produced for PBS by WGBH under license from BBC Worldwide.
    WGBH and PBS are not responsible for the content of websites linked to or from ANTIQUES ROADSHOW Online.
    PBS is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

    ROADSHOW on Facebook ROADSHOW Tweets ROADSHOW on YouTube