Childhood Memories Friday: Fisher Price Little People

childhoodmemoriessummer2My very favorite toys when I was little were made by Fisher Price.  Here are some of the earliest:

Fisher Price ferris wheel, pig, sealThe pig has lost has pull-string, and wow – they sure look old, huh?  The Ferris Wheel was one of my first exposures to my very favorite toy of all time:  the “little people.”  I remember we named the Wheel operator “Butch.”

My sister and I LOVED Fisher Price little people.  We played with them by the hour.  We had probably close to 100, and they were all in families and known by name (which was no mean feat, seeing as some of them were basically identical).

Fisher Price farm barn vintageAh, the farm.  You had to love the door that “mooed” when opened, or the cool details Fisher Price included:  the chickens that fit on the fence posts, the art details like a circus poster on the back of the barn.  My kids now have the newer versions of the farm and house, and while they’re still cute, they just don’t have the charm of the originals, in my opinion.  The “little” people are much fatter now – I’m assuming the originals would be choking hazards?  Sigh …

Fisher Price villageOne year my grandparents gave my sister and me the village.  What a thrill!  It had an apartment, a fire station (complete with a nifty little annex with a bed for the fireman to spend the night!), a movie theater, a phone booth (how vintage!), and even a jail.

Fisher Price houseboatThe houseboat was one of my favorites.  I spent hours with it, and here I’ve photographed it by the sink because we used to do that:  fill up the sink with water and have the people “swim” there.  They did float, you know – well, they were supposed to.  On a trip to Florida, I took my boat into the hotel pool and the dog (Toto) drowned!  I was devastated, and despite employees draining the pool, Toto was a goner.  My mom wrote to Fisher Price describing this incident, and lo and behold, a few weeks later a new Toto arrived in the mail.  Now, this seems like standard customer service, but at the time it really seemed like a miracle.

Fisher Price hospitalOne summer my parents offered my sister and me a choice:  we could go on a vacation, or choose a Fisher Price set.  We chose the hospital.  We loved it (working elevator!  “working” X-ray!”), and I think our parents got a good deal, huh?

Fisher Price castleI’ll never forget the Christmas I got the castle.  I have always loved royalty and castles, and this was just the ultimate.  There is a cave around the side where a dragon lives, a coach, a trap door leading to a dungeon … don’t you just get goosebumps just thinking about it?  Oh, that’s just me?  Never mind.

Fisher Price Little People homemade furnitureMy sister and I didn’t just play with the ready-made sets.  We would make houses out of cardboard boxes, complete with furniture from jello boxes and corrugated cardboard (see above).  Give us a few markers, glue, and an old wallpaper sample book and we were happy for the day.

I can’t neglect to mention that the girl above is sitting in a communion cup – they were perfect for seats!  We built a huge church out of blocks and the pews were – you guessed it – communion cups!

Our whole life is but a greater and longer childhood Benjamin Franklin

 

10 thoughts on “Childhood Memories Friday: Fisher Price Little People

  1. Your very first introduction to Fisher Price Little People was the Old Woman’s Shoe pull toy. We bought it at Sears in downtown Seymour.
    No wonder the Little People are getting bigger now. Have you watched people walking down the streets of Anytown, USA?

  2. Boy…You just brought back a flood of memories!! My mom did day care from the time I was 5 until after I was married and gone. We had a ton of toys! The Little People toys were my favorite, too! I’d play with them for hours and hours…

  3. Oh, these are so adorable! I love the guy named Butch. LOL! I think I had a dog that you pulled on a string, but it might have been my cousin’s. LOL! Most of my toys are gone, and it’s neat that you still have yours. 🙂 We had a lot of things made from tin when I was little, and then Barbie came out with her cardboard dreamhouse. LOL! I had a tin merry-go-round that you wound up. Things from my childhood are now popping up at places like Vermont Country Store. Does that make me vintage??? LOL!

    XO,

    Sheila

  4. WOW! that’s a lot of little people. Yes, they jsut dont make toys like the used to…it’s too too true.

  5. OHMYGOSH!!!! What a trip down memory lane!! My cousins had the barn and I was SO envious. I had the village and LOVED it.

    My sad little people memory is I lost one at the beach. I buried it and then couldn’t find it. LOL Oh the devastation! That was right up there with a dog chewing off my barbie’s hand. Childhood can be so traumatic. HA

  6. Which grandparents gave you the village?

    Let me tell you, our toys weren’t nearly that sophisticated when we were growing up! And the few that were, your mom had first dibs on. Oh, the angst related to being the middle child!

  7. I love this story, I bought these little people for my kids when they were little and my daughter Sherri loved them. She had lots of them and played with them for hours. I remember a bus she had where the little people would bounce up and down. So cute! I will always think of her when I see the little people. Thanks for Sharing.

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