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Alan F. Kelsey The Essex Regiment Brand Signed Custom 1:32 WWI Daimler Military Truck, Krupp’s Howitzer & Toy Soldiers with Wooden Box *RESEARCH UPDATED*

Alan F. Kelsey The Essex Regiment Brand Signed Custom 1:32 WWI Daimler Military Truck, Krupp’s Howitzer & Toy Soldiers with Wooden Box

We wanted to share this set of custom-made and hand-painted World War I soldiers and vehicles in a custom wooden box that was made by the toy soldier artist Alan F. Kelsey (1925-2014)  of Bradenton, Florida formerly of Buffalo. New York. It is signed on the bottom and marked with the date of 12/01.

Thanks to our research and Michael Pollick at the Herald-Tribune we were able to find more information on this artist.

Alan F. Kelsey was a master painter and artist, who was featured several times in Toy Soldier Magazines. He was born October 24th, 1985 in Stratford/London, England, and served in the Royal Air Force during World War II as a Flight sergeant from 1943-1946.

In 1957 he immigrated to the United States to Buffalo, New York where he became a U.S. Citizen in 1962 and worked as a lumber salesman. During this time he was an amateur artist with his work being relegated to the canvas. Somewhere at this point to share his love of art he taught oil and acrylic painting to others. Then in the 1980’s, now in his 70s, to spice things up a bit he began creating and painting toy soldiers which he would fill his house with various configurations of custom battle sets.

In the 1990s Kelsey moved to Bradenton, Florida where his wife suggested he go to craft fairs and start to sell the toy soldiers and vehicles he made. When he did, it was a huge success and he went professional under the name The Essex Regiment.

Michael Pollick in his article noted that, “He tries to find new poses for each soldier he makes, just to satisfy his own artistic sense that no two are exactly alike. All models are on the same scale of 1/32 of an inch to the foot. They are built to last—assembled with solder and brazing, and double-primed and triple-painted…what Kelsey does is more customized. He buys molds, then casts his own toy soldiers by pouring a special molten metal into the molds. In these molds, the arms, legs, head, torso are all cast separately. It is up to the craftsman to assemble them the way he sees fit, then paint them up to give them life.”

Mr. Kelsey was certainly an artist as we can tell from the detail and craftsmanship of this set that we were fortunate to find as his sets were very popular. Mr. Kelsey passed away on January 25, 2014, in Bradenton, Florida so these sets will become even rarer with time.

This is approximately 25” L altogether. We hope you enjoyed learning about this set as much as we did researching it and the man behind it!

Additional information

Weight 5 lbs
Dimensions 27 × 8 × 8 in
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