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Steiff

Although famous for its fine mohair and fabric animal toys, the Steiff  toy company made some very fine wooden toys in the 1925s and 1930s. These toys are very rare and very desirable among collectors.

The company's catalogs show that their first wooden toy may have been a toy train consisting of an engine, tender, passenger car, and hopper produced in 1925. In 1926 they produced a series of wooden bird pull toys and a butterfly. The goose pull toy shown at left was part of this series of pull toys. Its Steiff button, behind its left eye, is the style used  in the 1920s and 1930s.  The Steiff stock number was #1822. Also in 1926, the company made a series of wooden birds mounted to a bellows bird call maker (squeaker) and a wooden dog-shaped wagon. The dog's front paws move up and down as the wagon is pulled. In 1927, they were advertising a similar wagon in the shape of a rabbit. Also known are several wooden race cars and a tram car.

 

 

This Steiff Duck or Chick squeaker toy from about 1927 is in beautiful condition. Its bellows and squeaker still work perfectly. Steiff's production quality was and still is superb. These old Steiff wooden toys are very hard to find.

 

 

 

The Steiff company in Giengen started producing their first separate wooden toys in 1916 (they were making some accessory wooden toys for felt dolls before) as shown in the 1916/17 new line catalog. The first all wooden toy was the large train without coloration with a total length of 140cm shown here. According to Steiff Company production records, they produced only six of these trains - one for the catalog and five in 1918.
Daniel Hentschel - www.teddybaer-antik.de

See Daniel's webpage of Steiff wooden toys of this period at:
www.teddybaer-antik.de/holzbis29.html

Train photos courtesy of Daniel Hentschel

 

The following list of Steiff wooden toys has been compiled from reference books and known examples from the period before 1950. Many more were likely produced. Some of these may not have been produced. I would appreciate any additional information about these beautiful toys. Please send me photos of these toys and I will put them on this page.
Item Description
Tram  Push Pull toy - marked "LENKTRAM" Red wheels, yellow sides, red roof. 
Race car Driver head with black cap - 19302 style body. Red wheels, yellow body 
Futuristic  car Red wheels, yellow body. Vertical tail fin.
Race car Head of driver and head of mechanic. Typical of pre 1920s race car. Greay tires maroon sides, yellow hood.
Torpedo car Push pull car with large open passenger pit. Red wheels, black body. Spare tire on back.
Train Engine, tender, passenger car, hopper (see picture above).
Jockey rocker Jockey on rocking horse. Horse has round spots.
Girl rocker Girl in heavy coat, hat, gloves with stars on them. She stands on rocker.
Butterfly Pull toy. Wire frame.
Goose Grey back, whitish belly, orange beak, green wheels. Wire frame
Sparrow Wire frame. Similar to goose
Bird Wire frame. Beak open.
Bird squeaker Bird with open beak mounted to bellows squeaker.
Sparrow squeaker Sparrow like bird with closed beak mounted to bellows squeaker.
Duck squeaker Duck mounted to bellows squeaker.
Dog wagon Wagon pull toy with dog face and body . Paws move as wagon is pulled.
Rabbit wagon Similar to dog wagon but with rabbit features.
Truck Dump truck. 1927