New Christmas Toys Declare All-Out War (Jan, 1942)

New Christmas Toys Declare All-Out War

A GENERATION of mothers and fathers, most of whom were determined a few years ago that they “wouldn’t raise their boys to be soldiers,” find themselves confronted this year with a selection of Christmas toys almost exclusively of a war-like nature. The toy-makers explain that the children demand them—and 5-year-old Billy Navard and Craig Smith, shown on this page, seem to be enjoying their martial playthings immensely. Above, Craig rides a pedal fighter plane and scans the skies for enemy craft. At left, Billy fires a coastal defense gun which shoots wooden bullets, while, below, he speeds over rough terrain in a motorized division’s army supply truck.

  1. Rick s. says: December 20, 20114:37 pm

    I believe that plane was designed by Victor Schreckengost, a noted Cleveland artist and designer. My wife and I had the pleasure of meeting him and seeing one of those planes several years ago at a special exhibit he had at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Anyone who still has one of those planes has a fortune in his hands. A reproduction of it can be seen at this site:



  2. tom says: December 21, 20118:09 am

    I doubt that the kids playing with these considered anything other that they were really neat toys. Although later on in history I played “Army” and “War” with similar toys I don’t think that I had any particular scarring psychological damage from it. When you’re 7 or 8 concepts like war are pretty nebulous.

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