Local museum gifted with vintage toys
Bill Ochs of Casper, Wyoming, has gifted the Springfield Museum with a variety of vintage toys.
“It’s a bunch of treasures no one seems to want,” said Ochs during his visit to the Springfield Museum on New Year’s Day.
He brought a big box filled with toys from the 1920s, 30s and 40s that included a rare vintage 1920s Tubey Toy Building Set distributed by Johnson-Knudson Co., Chicago, that was a precursor to Tinker Toys. The newest of the toys was a Betty Cocker Easy Bake Oven, a working toy oven, that was introduced in the 60s. The collection of toys included a 1936 Tapestry Art Outfit for creative play, a 1937 Progress Parade Modeling Set — The Little Sculptor, a Microscope Set, a Wood Burning Set, a Plastic Mold Maker, and Mosaics.
“I’m a hoarder of old stuff and a family history nut,” said Ochs, the grandson of A.C. Ochs, founder of the A.C. Ochs Brick Company. His father, Vincent Ochs, grew up in the two-story brick Colonial Revival A.C. Ochs house sited on a corner lot on Springfield’s Marshall Avenue, currently the home of Paul and Jo Muske.
Ochs, a retired math and science teacher, enjoys surfing the web. He learned that the Springfield Area Historical Society was hoping to expand its toy collection at the museum for future generations to enjoy. Persuaded by his wife, to “declutter” their house of some of his collections, he decided to give the toys to the local museum. During a visit with family in the Twin Cities during the holidays, he drove to Springfield and delivered the toys.