Mid-20th Century Schuco Wind-up Toys

Value (2005) | $4,500 Auction$5,000 Auction

I got them from my mom, who got them from her first husband, who was in World War II in Germany in the army. He worked for combat engineering in his battalion and built roads for the army, for the troops, and came across the factory where these were manufactured, and went in one day, on off time, I'm sure, and played with them. And these are what he brought home back to her when he came back to the States.

Well, we often get toys like this that are brought back into this country from soldiers who were in the war. And they always brought back these wonderful German toys. And a lot of them are by this maker called Schuco. Schuco was an absolutely wonderful toy maker. They started in 1912, and they're still making toys today. And basically, the toys like this, the little windup mice--we see a lot of these--very popular toys then and also popular by collectors today. And they all have sort of the same action. You wind them up and they just do their little vibrating dance. And this is a toy that's probably worth about $200. But you have some toys by Schuco that were made pre-World War II and are really amazingly rare. These little guys are prewar. Some people call them blacksmiths; they're little gnomes. This one, with his wooden lantern and his little ax and complete with his beard, is about $1,000. And this one, too, about $1,000. And this guy, he's a German sort of a marshal waving his baton. And you know what we say. It's all about condition. The condition on this is extraordinary. The paint on his face is just absolutely flawless. He's about $1,200.

Oh, my goodness.

Now, I have a little problem with this story. And oftentimes, stories come down through families and...


This guy was not made before World War II. If you look carefully, on the bottom of his plastic feet, it's very hard to read, but you can see "U.S. Zone Germany." So he was made between the end of the war in 1945 until around 19-early-50s. So I don't know where this came from, but he's not of this series.

Oh, okay.

But he's very unusual. He's worth between $1,000 and $1,500.

Ooh. Nice toys.

Nice toys.

Very nice toys.

So you have roughly about $4,500 to $5,000 worth of toys sitting here.

That's amazing. Thank you. I won't play with them anymore.

Well, please don't.

That's amazing. I really had no idea.

Appraisal Details

Noel Barrett Antiques & Auctions Ltd.
Carversville, PA
Appraised value (2005)
$4,500 Auction$5,000 Auction
Los Angeles, CA (August 13, 2005)
20th Century

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