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Nonpareil Express Truck Tin Lithographed Penny Toy for Sale


Nonpareil Express Truck Tin Lithographed Penny Toy


If this looks like a super-sized penny toy, it is not without reason.  Nonpareil (without equal in French) was an American company that came out with a number of regular penny toys and then some super-sized toys. This particular truck was patented to The Ferdinand Strauss Company for sale in their stores.

There is a string hole in the front in case kids wanted to use them as pull toys.  Then there were a number of slots pre-punched on the chassis for the manufacturer to make different models.  This toy is complete and in excellent condition for its age.  Most of them are bent and missing mirrors or don’t have as much gold finish left. The lithographed driver was only printed on one side and lithography was sparse, most likely to save money.

Our example of this Nonpareil “Express Truck” is in great original condition with no restorations, repairs, breaks or touch ups. The lithos on this piece are strong and show the usual patina, chips, scuffs, scratches, surface rust and wear that are normally found with age and play. It is approximately 9 ¼” L x 3” W. This would be a great addition to any collection. We invite you to view the photos to further determine quality and condition.




A brief history of the Ferdinand Strauss Company of New York City, New York:

The Ferdinand Strauss Company was founded in the early 1900’s in New York City, New York by Ferdinand Strauss. Strauss was from the Alsace region of Germany. In the beginning, Strauss imported various toys that he sold from his New York Shop. Strauss specialized in importing tin mechanical toys and produced toys from 1914 to 1927.

During early 1900’s, European toy manufacturers had already perfected color lithography, and were manufacturing many tin toys and pressed steel toys for the North American market. Like most European toy manufacturers, Strauss also manufactured pressed tin toys that had color lithography on them.  Many of the toys also had wind-up or clockwork mechanisms in order to have them move on their own. In 1912 Strauss hired Louis Marx, who later founded the Marx toy Company.

In 1918 Strauss began manufacturing toys on his own instead of importing them. Strauss produced (wind-up) toys for the Abraham & Strauss Department Stores and was a pioneer in the friction tin toy industry. They managed to capture much of the 1920’s mechanical tin toy craze, but Strauss was eventually out manufactured by other toy companies that had similar toys.

1 in stock

Additional information

Weight 2 lbs
Dimensions 12 × 12 × 12 in