BY SY SCHRECKINGER
TOY MANUFACTURERS OF the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries were adept in determining the potential popularity of their products. Toys and
mechanical banks were created to appeal to the general public. There was, indeed, no lack of subject matter, as indicated by the diversity of themes utilized.
Mechanicals that preached morality included “Boy Robbing Bird’s Nest” and “Boys Stealing Watermelons”. Educational themes were provided by “Bank of Education and Economy” and “Picture Gallery”. The excitement of circuses and enjoyment of zoos were demonstrated by “Circus Bank”, “Elephant and Three Clowns”, “Lion and Monkeys” and “Zoo Bank”.
A humorous and, somewhat, surprising element was provided by mechanicals that included “Zig Zag Bank” and our subject, “Fun Producing Savings Bank”, seen in Figures 1 and 2. The humorous aspect of “Fun Producing” is revealed upon insertion of one cent into its slot. Although the scale’s face promises “YOUR CORRECT WEIGHT”, the deposit subsequently reveals the surprising answer “YOU ARE ONE CENT LIGHTER”.