One toy that seems to have defied time and been popular generation after generation is the Fisher Price Little People. Just this year they are celebrating the 50th anniversary of these delightful toys. In honor of this special birthday, Fisher Price is holding exciting events all year that include a live traveling musical show. They have even created special commemorative playsets that are sure to be a hit with little children.
The very first Little People toy created in 1959 was the Safety School Bus. The bus had six removable peg people that could be played with separately. This toy was so popular that it began one of the longest standing and popular subcategories of toys today. In the 1960s the first families were created, along with the very popular Nifty Station Wagon. Today, a Nifty Station Wagon in mint condition and in the box will fetch up to $600 with toy collectors.
The name “Play Family” was officially used in marketing in 1963 when Fisher Price created the Lacing Shoe with Play Family that included a mom, puppy and four kids. This name would eventually become known as the brand it’s evolved into today, “World of Little People.” This playset was so popular that individual Play Family pieces were offered in addition to the sets. These characters reflected the times of the 1960s with names like Butch, Fido, Penny, Pee Wee, Mommy and Daddy. The individual pieces went on to include all kinds of animals as well, and since 1959 Fisher Price has created over 80 different kinds of animals from alligators to zebras.
From the first Play Family, Fisher Price focused its energy on creating really fun, unique playsets. Toy enthusiasts and children of the ‘60s will remember the big red barn that had people, moveable animals, a silo and even a front door that made a “moo” sound when opened. Some other earlier, popular playsets include the family house, action garage, airport, school and a castle that was flanked by towers. All of these early playsets have really memorable features, including crank lifts and magnetic pieces.
Since the earliest production of Fisher Price’s Little People, kids have been completely charmed and smitten by the characters. This is evident by the staying power of the brand and the evolution of the toys over the years. Most adults will fondly remember playing for hours with them as children, and this has made them very special, meaningful toys to collect today.