A Toy (Hi)story – FAO Schwarz Celebrates 150 Years

Founded in 1862, legendary toy store FAO Schwarz is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. To celebrate, they’re taking a look back at the toys that helped to make them great along the way.

A lot of classics are here, and the infographic they’ve supplied makes one thing clear – the ’60s were good years for toys. That decade saw the introduction of the Etch-a-Sketch, Barbie and Ken dolls, the Easy-Bake Oven, and the original action figure – G.I. Joe. If you were going to make a Mount Rushmore of toys, you could do a lot worse than those four.

FAO Schwarz reaches back way into the past to recount the introduction of the unforgiving time-sink that is Monopoly, the Slinky, and the Stieff Teddy Bear, then heads into the present, with recent hits like the Razor Scooter and the phenomenon that was Tickle-Me-Elmo.

The toy retailer also has a special place in tech history – FAO Schwarz was the very first store in the United States to sell the original Nintendo Entertainment System in 1985, bringing Mario, Link, and Mega Man to very excited kids everywhere.

This year, FAO Schwarz is taking a look at what might be the hot items of the 2012 holiday season. The elegant Barbie Soldier Doll, inspired by FAO Schwarz’ toy soldiers, looks to march under trees and into stockings, along with a 10” plush pug. They’re also reaching back into the past, bringing back the classic derby car and reviving the iconic foot piano fromĀ Big.

Here’s to 150 more years of FAO Schwarz, the promised land for kids of all ages.

Celebrating FAO Schwarz