Are Vintage Toys Valuable?

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

Toy collecting is more than just a hobby; it can also be a means of creating a valuable asset. While not everyone is aware of the fact, vintage toys are highly sought after by many collectors and can earn a sizable return on the open market. However, there are factors that will enhance the value of collectible toys. Here are some examples of toys that are likely to command an attractive price from collectors.

Toys from the Depression Era are often valuable.
Toys from the Depression Era are often valuable.

One of the perennial favorites in the way of antique toys are dolls crafted in years gone by. Porcelain and china dolls hailing from the Victorian era are likely to fetch a considerable price, especially if the dolls are well-preserved and are dressed in original clothing. From time to time, someone comes across dolls of this type in old trunks tucked away in attics. Upon having them appraise, people are often surprised and delighted to find they have uncovered a valuable asset.

Metal toys hailing from the Depression era are also highly sought-after vintage toys. Cars, trucks, fire engines, and airplanes that are intact with all the detailed parts and still sporting the original paint job offer a glimpse of a time when a young boy would be delighted with receiving a single toy of this type of his birthday or on Christmas. In general, restored toys from the Depression do not command the same price as vintage toys that were preserved along with their original packaging.

An interesting category in vintage toys are items that were sold in connection with various types of products during the first half of the 20th century. Often, these toys were obtained by sending in box tops from cereal boxes, or were sometimes included in the contents of the boxes themselves. Action figures, decoder rings, and other interesting gadgets designed for children cost almost nothing when new. But today, these simple devices can cause a stir and command a considerable sum of money.

Collectibles that are connected with popular television characters from the fifties and sixties are another type of antique toys that are worth a great deal today. Toy holsters and guns connected with popular Westerns from the era continue to sell well today. Board games styled after science fiction, comedy, and musical shows from the era also are favorites on the open market. As with other vintage toys, the items that are in near to pristine condition are hard to find and will sell at a considerably higher price.

There are a number of other vintage toys that attract the interest of collectors all over the world. Dolls resembling adult women and men from the middle 20th century sell briskly, especially if available in their original packaging. Accessories to go along with these figures, such as cars, houses, jeeps, and tanks are also sought after items that can turn a tidy profit. Train sets, stock car tracks, and even vintage pool toys can often be worth a considerable sum in the right marketplace.

If you have an attic or other storage area in your home, look for vintage toys that may have been tucked back by previous generations. There is every chance of finding vintage toys stuck back in various nooks and crannies; toys that could earn a great deal of money if offered for sale.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum

After many years in the teleconferencing industry, Michael decided to embrace his passion for trivia, research, and writing by becoming a full-time freelance writer. Since then, he has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including wiseGEEK, and his work has also appeared in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and several newspapers. Malcolm’s other interests include collecting vinyl records, minor league baseball, and cycling.

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Discussion Comments


My mother has many vintage tin toys that belonged to her parents. Though they are probably worth a lot of money, she has no intention of selling them because of all the great memories they hold for her.

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