Lost in Space Toys

Don’t ask me why I started collecting tin litho space toys: it started as something more visceral than intellectual. Perhaps it’s because the Golden Age of the tin litho space toy (the mid 1950’s to about 1970) kind of coincided with my own. I was still a kid and the space program and other advances promised a bright and boundless future: We would all own flying cars; vacations to the moon were on the horizon; robots would competently and swiftly meet our every need.

As time went on, the space age lost its luster and so did the appeal of the old tin litho space toy. Star Wars would later redefine how we collect and merchandise “the future”, but it would never be the same as those innocent times when my entire family would sit in front of the television and watch each space launch with the breathless anticipation of that bright and shiny future just within our reach.

Guess I’m still looking for that — and thus, the inexplicable appeal.

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