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Victoria Gray
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The history of black dolls is complicated. Post-Civil War minstrel shows often influenced the black dolls produced in the late 1800s, such as promotional dolls of Rastus advertising Cream of... Continue reading
Posted Feb 1, 2018 at Global Toy News
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In 1972, a crack commando unit was sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn't commit. These men promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade to... Continue reading
Posted Jan 19, 2018 at Global Toy News
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Have you ever had a day when you just want to throw something? Well, it’s probably optimal if you choose an object that is meant to be thrown. Playthings such... Continue reading
Posted Jan 5, 2018 at Global Toy News
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I grew up in a family of makers before the Maker Faire existed. My grandmothers could knit, sew, make jewelry, or hand hook a rug. They were the early generation... Continue reading
Posted Dec 19, 2017 at Global Toy News
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The Paper Airplane Soars into the National Toy Hall of Fame Historians debate the origins of paper airplanes. Early attempts at constructing flying machines fascinated children and adults alike. The... Continue reading
Posted Dec 9, 2017 at Global Toy News
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On November 9, 2017, Wiffle Ball took its place of honor in the National Toy Hall of Fame, joining 64 other classic toys and games. Introduced in 1953, the Wiffle... Continue reading
Posted Nov 28, 2017 at Global Toy News
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Today people find themselves bombarded with ideas, images, and characters from every kind of media. Game manufacturers quickly capitalize on that phenomenon by producing classic games licensed for popular themes.... Continue reading
Posted Nov 11, 2017 at Global Toy News
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Although I sometimes roll my eyes at the new commemorative “holidays” that get added to the calendar, I’m actually delighted to see that November 4, 2017 has been declared the... Continue reading
Posted Oct 28, 2017 at Global Toy News
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What makes a game classic? Part of the answer is longevity. Most people consider chess classic; we’ve played it for centuries. What about playing cards? Woodblock-printed cards appeared during China’s... Continue reading
Posted Oct 12, 2017 at Global Toy News
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As Chief Curator for The Strong, I start each morning with a to-do list and an idea of what I’m hoping to accomplish, but I can’t always picture what will... Continue reading
Posted Sep 16, 2017 at Global Toy News
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“Summer just opens the door and lets you out." Deb Caletti, Honey, Baby, Sweetheart The front of a school building shimmers in the sun. A loud bell rings. The doors... Continue reading
Posted Aug 4, 2017 at Global Toy News
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Since last summer, you may have noticed small groups of millennials walking briskly toward landmarks surrounded by people staring intently at their smartphone screens. Every now and then, cries of... Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2017 at Global Toy News
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“Stop playing with that ball inside the house! You’re going to break something—take it outside!” Those are familiar phrases that I heard when I was younger, and I am sure... Continue reading
Posted Jun 24, 2017 at Global Toy News
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In 2015 David Howe, an avid chess enthusiast in Rochester, donated 40 different variations of chess sets to The Strong’s permanent collection. Howe’s gift included 4-Way Chess for four players,... Continue reading
Posted Jun 2, 2017 at Global Toy News
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It seems that now, perhaps more than ever, people everywhere are constantly on the go. Traveling to work or school, the gym, or the grocery store—the list goes on and... Continue reading
Posted May 30, 2017 at Global Toy News
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Growing up in Pennsylvania, my parents frequently looked for family excursions within a few hours’ drive from our home near Pittsburgh. Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, became a frequent destination for the... Continue reading
Posted May 17, 2017 at Global Toy News
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I remember my first yo-yo: a blue Duncan Imperial. I was 7 years old and had saved up enough of my allowance to buy it. The drive to the store... Continue reading
Posted May 11, 2017 at Global Toy News
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Think about some of the “must-have” toys you’ve seen (or even procured) over the last few years. How about the playful robotic dog Zoomer? Or the small, colorful, hooked building... Continue reading
Posted Apr 19, 2017 at Global Toy News
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. We have all heard the saying that a dog is man’s (and woman’s too) best friend. We love dogs so much that they even have their own special day—National... Continue reading
Posted Mar 22, 2017 at Global Toy News
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I receive a lot of strange looks whenever I tell people that I look forward to the end of summer. Perhaps your face has morphed into such an expression after... Continue reading
Posted Mar 10, 2017 at Global Toy News
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I’ve admired The Strong’s vintage Drive-Mobile arcade game since the first time I stood in front of it with Martin Reinhardt, the museum’s arcade game conservation technician. It was exciting... Continue reading
Posted Mar 3, 2017 at Global Toy News
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When I was an undergraduate, I was obsessed with the television program E! True Hollywood Story. Each week, I took a salacious rollercoaster ride through the ups and downs of... Continue reading
Posted Feb 27, 2017 at Global Toy News
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While pursuing my undergraduate degree, I worked as a DJ for the college radio station. One spring semester, I had a timeslot of 2 to 4 p.m. on Friday afternoons.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2017 at Global Toy News
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My favorite artifact in America at Play, an exhibit that opened on The Strong’s second floor in December 2016, isn’t the oldest, the biggest, or the showiest. But it’s one... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2017 at Global Toy News
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Here’s a fun experiment: suggest playing a game of Monopoly and predict the responses you’ll receive. More often than not, you’ll be hit with an audible groan and the familiar... Continue reading
Posted Jan 23, 2017 at Global Toy News