Lee's headquarters Gettysburg

Lee's headquarters Gettysburg
The recently restored area around Lee's Headquarters in Gettysburg PA!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Marx Museum- Moundsville West Virginia

I was personally very excited about stopping by the Marx Toy Museum in Moundsville West Virginia while we were there.

Marx toys were THE toy company for several decades.  They made a lot of nice dolls, figures and cars.  I personally appreciated the company for its VERY detailed lines of small figures, especially presidents.

They made thousands of small figures though, including cowboys, Indians, animals, Disney characters, astronauts, etc.  If they could think of a figure to make, they would make it.

But they made other great toys too.  They made some of the first small figures of popular super-heroes.  They made the Big Wheel, and Rock'Em Sock'Em Robots (which are still in production by other companies).  They made trains.

They also made "The Best of the West".  Easily one of the coolest action figure lines ever.  These were 12" cowboys and Indians made of hard plastic.  They were durable, detailed and very articulated.... and they had all sorts of cool accessories!

So, we made it to the museum and bought our tickets.  There was a very sweet and energetic lady running the place while we were there.  We weren't expecting it, but she ended up giving us a guided tour that lasted probably a couple of hours!

She seemed to know everything about the company.  She pointed out several of the very rare Marx toys.  My favorites included young boys in some sets carrying rifles.  These were later retooled to NOT have weapons in their hands.

We were also told about things that some of the Marx artists subtly included on the toys.  One artist used his children's initials on licence plates.  The number 303 was a favorite at Marx, and it appears as a house number here and there.

A VERY cool bit of trivia involved one of the Marx sculptors using his niece as a model for a female Indian in the Best of the West line.  Our tour guide told us that the niece now works at the local bank!

Which reminds me.....  I forgot to mention that the Marx Toy Museum here has a very direct link to the community!  The city of Moundsville was the home to a Marx factory!  We watched a short video while we were there about the local connection!

We also watched a film about Louis Marx, the company founder.  A figure of Louis was available in the gift shop!

One of my favorite areas of the museum was the prototype room.  This room had several play sets and toys that were never mass produced.  Also on display were many figures cast in a different color of plastic than what was used later.

Our guide pointed out a great photo on the wall.  The picture is of Louis Marx at a baseball game with Richard Nixon- watching as Yogi Berra makes a catch near Jackie Robinson!

I could easily go on and on about how much I enjoyed my time here.  This is a must see museum for anyone in the area.














1 comment:

jimerado said...

I wanted to note here that this great museum will be closing in a couple of days. I am so glad that I was able to visit it while it was still open.