By Jess Grimm
Scott Antique Markets in Washington Court House, Ohio, is the name of the game if you’re looking for vintage toys. Each building brought a new era of play to the market, from model trains of varying scales in one building to movie collectibles in another and tin toys and dolls in yet another building, each one bringing their own unique memories along.
“The way collectible items usually work is that the era that the buyer was playing with those toys, that’s what they collect when they get to be 30-40-50 years old and they have some disposable money to spend on fun things,” says Nancy Meeker, a toy vendor from Cortland, Ohio that specializes in early toys. “They’re looking for their childhood things.”
Meeker says the vintage toys she sells a lot include Fisher Price toys from the 1930s and 1940s, Disney toys from the late 1920s and 1930s and dolls from the 1950s and 1960s.
Another vendor, Brian Friedman, from Gahanna, Ohio, sells toys that relate to popular culture. “Star Wars is always popular it seems. That’s the main thing,” Friedman said. “It seems like people never lose their enjoyment of dragons and dinosaurs though. The movies, like ‘Jurassic Park,’ come out once in a while and renew their fervor. There’s been a couple dragon movies, and especially ‘Game of Thrones.’ So it just keeps reminding them.”
No matter what era or genre you collect, most vendors agree on a few simple rules to help determine value, including condition, packaging and accessories.
“Anything you find in the original box is always exciting and always commands a better price if the box is in good condition, as well as accessories,” said Meeker. “When you get into the dolls they always have accessories, so any time you can find some little hidden part like a purse or original shoes or the hat, that adds to the whole outfit and the price.”
“Accessories are nice because you don’t want to have a soldier without his sword or something like that,” adds Friedman. “Condition of course, just like coins, you don’t want something that’s broken or nicked or scratched. And of course the rarity is always a big thing.”
Scott Antique Markets’ Ohio events will be held in Columbus on Jan. 26-27, Feb. 23-24, and March 23-24. The first 2019 Washington Court House event is scheduled for April 26-27. For more information about the shows, visit www.scottantiquemarkets.com.