Toy Typewriters

Posted by: mellow60s in Member Blogs

I have enjoyed typing since my teens, when I enlisted into military service and was taught as part of my training. Over the years I came to enjoy anything with a keyboard, from typewriters to teletypewriters and, of course, the computer.

This is a Barclay lead soldier sitting in a chair at a table with his hands upon a toy typewriter.

I discovered toy typewriters not long after I discovered Ebay, the world's garage sale. I found a little Simplex that piqued my curiosity, then a Marx, then ... well, you get the idea. Early on it became obvious I would have to limit the collection somehow so I decided, for the most part, to restrict it to toy typewriters made in the United States before Japan took over the market. The Japanese products were very good and eventually became both attractive and reasonably functional. But there would be far too little room to include them.

I hope eventually to provide better photos of my collection, which is kept in glass cases, but for now there just is no time or energy for it. Nevertheless, I hope you will enjoy seeing them and feel free to comment or offer suggestions and corrections should you wish.

These toys are arranged in alpabetical order by manufacturer excepting the Simplex toys, of which there are so many that I am going to put them at the end. The ordering of the Simplex toys will be explained by supporting text for the photos.

I do hope you will enjoy these delightful toys, and that you will offer any ideas, questions, and corrections as may occur to you.

American Flyer

An American Flyer toy typewriter with cast typing wheel


Berwin Jr Executive, teal, with typewheel, faux keyboard, and working space bar, shift keys.

Red Berwin toy typewriter with typewheel and faux keyboard.

The gold Berwin with typewheel and red keys.

Buddy L

Blue plastic Buddy L with true keys and space bar


Cohn Cub Reporter toy typewriter, red and blue

Geschir (German Import)

Small green Geschir in red metal case shown with postcard for size comparison.

Kamkap (UK Import) & Petite (UK Model)

Blue Kamkap typewriter with full functionality of real typewriters.

White Petite U.K. fully functional toy typewriter


Mark DIAL vertical index toy typewriter with tin base base

Black Marx Junior Dial with faux keyboard

Marx Junior

Tom Thumb

Early red compact Tom Thumb dial typewriter with faux keyboard

Tom Thumb pale Green dial typewriter with spacebar and carriage

Green Tom Thumb fully-functioning toy typewriter with metal case.

Metallic blue Tom Thumb

Unique Art

Unique Art

Unique Art




The Simplex






Another version of the Simplex






This Simplex


Tags: Other Stuff, Tin Toys

mellow60s on May 26, 2009

Thank you, johnbad!

It sure made me happy to read your very welcome comment on my toy typer collection. I thank you for it very much. - Mellow60s (John in Texas)
johnbad on May 23, 2009


Did not even know these existed! Thanks for a great article.
mellow60s on May 21, 2009

Ditty Bops

Thank you so much for your comment! The typist and typewriter are individual castings, the table from wood - all from Barclay. The table is about two inches tall which will give you an idea the size of each piece, and the typewriter is fairly nicely detailed. I bought the lot not only because of the typewriter but also because of the memories it brought back. I learned to type so that I could transcribe Chinese off the radio to paper via typewriter and it was quite interesting work. We also had Navy fellows who were called "ditty bops" (dit-dit-dit dah-dah-dah dit-dit-dit: SOS) and whose abililty to send and receive was truly amazing to behold!
GunnerJim on May 21, 2009

Old typewriters.

I will be looking forward to your pictures on this subject. Machine Morse Code typing was a real profession in the Single Corps and couldn't those blocks go for broke. Is the miniature typist made of wood as the table looks as if it is or is the male made of die-cast material.
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