Monday, April 16, 2012

Marx #T3-21 Headquarters U.S. Army Training Center & Army Man Layout

Here's a tin building that I forgot I had! It was in a box with non-military toys  vs. being displayed on the shelf. The funny thing is, this was my first tin-litho acquisition back in 1998 or so. I used it and other Little Green Army Men stuff to change the theme of a portable train layout. Prior to this the train layout was decked out in a Hershey's chocolate theme but I decided to mix things up a little and change the theme to an Army training base ala Marx playsets of the 1950s. However, during the 1990s my hobby direction was in a flux. I had already made the transition from HO scale model railroading to 3-rail O-gauge. I would buy some old Lionel, some new Lionel, some K-Line, etc., and somewhere along the line I found out about tinplate Marx, American Flyer, and other tinplate trains. Tinplate was cool and it was fun! But when I decided to change the theme of my portable layout I needed toys and wanted vintage toys if possible. I was lost, having totally forgotten about playsets and Little Green Army Men, and toys in general. This project, and this building in particular, launched my interest in toys and reconnected me to the toys of my youth and ultimately led down the path of collecting that I've been sharing with you the past year or so. Here's a couple of pics from that Army Man layout of 1999:

This building dates from 1951 when Marx introduced its 145 piece Army Training Center which contained 45mm soldiers of the type shown above on the layout. There were a couple of really nice hard plastic vehicles and a whole bunch of accessories. So, without further ado here is the T3-21 Army training center Headquarters. Enjoy!