Toy Treasures Set World Records

Record-breaking action at Philip Weiss Auctions this autumn brought pop culture nostalgia front and center, while the toy collecting community continues to celebrate the passion of the hobby.

The October auction at Philip Weiss saw a 1960s Wagon Train playset, unused and in mint condition, made by Marx Toys, sell for $15,255 – a new world auction record for a Marx playset. The playset was expected to sell for $1,000-$2,000. This Marx playset took the world auction record title from another Marx playset that featured Ben-Hur and sold for $9,320 just minutes before, at the same auction. The Ben-Hur playset was expected to sell for $2,000-$4,000, according to a press release from the auction house.

toys and prices 2009“Obviously the prices realized for the Marx playsets were a nice surprise,” said Philip Weiss, in the press release. “Given the current state of the financial markets and the economy as a whole, I’d say the sale was a success.”

While this world record-setting auction isn’t the average response, the passion for toy collecting does remain steadfast in light of the economy. It’s the passion for the hobby and all it represents that makes it more than a profit point for many people, writes Tom Bartsch, contributing editor of Toys & Prices 2009 in the introduction of this hobby favorite.

“If you collect now, during a challenging economy, you’re doing it as a passion and not a get-rich-quick scheme,” stated Bartsch. “And that’s what toys are all about, a piece of nostalgia that can grow into a fascination that fills rooms in houses and provides endless stories.”

O'Brien's Collecting ToysEven if you aren’t in it for the profit, knowing the identity and value of your toys builds your knowledge, deepens your appreciation for nostalgia and gives you an edge when you choose to buy or sell toys in the future. Two guides to help you achieve this are Toys & Prices 2009 and O’Brien’s Collecting Toys. These references cover pre war toys (O’Brien’s) and post-World War II toys, creating a terrific tandem for any toy collector.

Thoroughly updated this year, both are current in pricing and identification details, and contain new listings as well as many fresh new photos. A great gift for anyone with any interest in toy collecting, the price is right when you order by Nov. 14 and Save 15%. Visit to order today, and be sure to enter Coupon Code ATBART1107.