Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Remembering The Lincoln Logs...!
Most of us can remember the time before electronic toys.
At one time or another in your childhood, I'll bet you were introduced to the Lincoln Logs! Even if you didn't have a set, probably some of your friends did. Of course, this was in the day that children were given toys that made them use their imagination a lot more than today.
With these wonderful toys, so many things were built and story lines often created to go along with what ever was built, that the log sets could spawn countless hours of productive play.
The history of the Lincoln Log is a great deal different than you might think! Take a look at this article about their origin and you'll see what I mean!
In the 1910s, American builders were busy on construction sites in the city and in the playroom. Introduced just after Tinkertoys and the Erector Set, Lincoln Logs were yet another construction toy to make it big during the decade.
John Lloyd Wright, son of architect Frank Lloyd Wright, brought out the line of sturdy, interlocking logs in 1916. Wright claimed that the foundation of Tokyo’s earthquake-proof Imperial Hotel, which he saw while it was under construction, inspired the shape of his logs.
Lincoln Logs turned out to be a toymaker’s dream. The original sets were an instant success, and after World War II, sales of Lincoln Logs got another boost from the baby boom. The sets were popular among postwar parents because they were more sophisticated than plain building blocks but still challenged children’s powers of concentration and eye-hand coordination.
Ironically, Lincoln Logs—long a favorite of proponents of educational toys—were among the first toys to be promoted on a television show, 1953’s Pioneer Playhouse. The ads targeted affluent parents, who were most likely to own a television set and to buy educational toys. Sometimes a toy that has had a previous life returns to catch the eyes of children at just the right moment in history.
I guess it's a good thing that kids were never told that the logs they enjoyed playing with so much were actually helping them learn. The only thing I can see that would have improved on the Lincoln Logs, and other construction toys over the years, was an instruction book on how to make children pick them up after they were through playing with them, right?
Some things just never change!
Now, my friends, let's get some fresh coffee and sit outside for a bit. Nice and cool this morning for a change!