DealDash Kids: The Slinky History and Facts
Today’s classic toy spotlight is on the Slinky! Who has had a Slinky? Raise your hand!
The Slinky is an iconic toy that has been around for more than 70 years and continues to be a popular item even in this day and age. It’s hard to believe that this simple spring-based toy was created by accident! Join me as we explore the history of the Slinky, from its humble beginnings to what it means today. Read on for some fun facts and interesting history of the Slinky, from DealDash.
The Slinky – Background
We should begin at the beginning, of course! One day in 1943, a naval engineer named Richard James was working at home. In his work as a scientist and inventor with the US Navy’s Department of Ordnance during WWII, he had been tasked with developing springs that could be fitted into shipboard gun turrets to dampen recoil forces. His wife
Betty noticed how one spring fell from its hook and started sliding back-and-forth; she suggested it would make for good children’s plaything if it were made out of wire instead of steel! Next, they took some wire pieces about 11 inches long and attached these to a wooden board. When they released the spring it started “walking” down the stairs! They went on to sell 400 of their new toy called Slinky, as christened by Betty.
Interestingly enough, it also took them several months of trial and error before they figured out how many coils would be needed so that when you stretched it all out, one end could reach down to touch the ground. Then there were more additional tweaks until finally, they arrived at what we know today as our favorite childhood plaything: Mr. Slinky himself!
First Sales of the Slinky
Next, a few more fun facts about the Slinky!
✵First off, James used his wife’s name for the product. This was definitely not a common occurrence at the time. Likely, this is because he did not want people to know about this fun little project that was taking him away from more serious work!
✵Also, he also did not patent his invention at first; instead, he had metalworkers in Philadelphia make them by hand.
✵Finally, the Jameses sold their toys through Gimbel’s department store for $0.25 each, which is approximately $15 in today’s money. And this is how they became popular throughout America—they were one of just two or three playthings available then that appealed to both boys and girls, too.
If you would like to learn more about the Slinky, and other classic toys, visit the Heinz History Center site. Check out their site for some fascinating facts.
Get Your Favorite Toys on DealDash!
Finally, December is here! What types of toys are you shopping for this year? If kid’s toys and games are on your shopping list this year, DealDash is here to help. You will find a great selection of toys for babies, kids, and teens. No matter if you’re shopping for Legos, board games, or video games, DealDash has you covered! Check back often to see all of the new offerings that are up for auction.
Thanks for Reading
That’s it for now—I’m excited about writing more history and facts about classic toys next week! I hope that you learned a thing or two about one of America’s most beloved classic toys, the Slinky.
If you have any questions or would like to share your own thoughts regarding this post I would love to hear from you in the comment section below. Thanks for reading, everyone. Have a great day and happy bidding everyone!
This sponsored DealDash blog article was written by Dawn E, a mother of 3 who loves DealDash. Dawn was compensated for writing this article. Check out Dawn and her cats on Instagram! This blog is written by real DealDash customers. The opinions and advice shared here represent our customers’ views and not those of the company.