Monday, June 11, 2012

Classic Toy Soldiers (CTS) American Civil War Mansion

Today marks a big break from 'Marx Monday's' here on Toys & Stuff. The truth is I'm running out of Marx tin to feature! It had to happen sooner or later - hey, regardless of how it appears I don't have it all, goodness knows I tried but there's only so much room in The Cave :-) So I guess what we'll do is try to keep Monday's devoted to tin in some form or fashion. In point of fact there are a few more Marx pieces to present, I just haven't photographed them yet but there's not enough to keep the 'Marx Monday's' theme going for long. ALSO, keep your eyes open for an upcoming issue of 'Playset' magazine, because yours truly will have a major contribution to the upcoming Marx Super Circus issue.

Now, back to the post at hand. When the original Marx company folded in the '70s there was a big void to fill in the playset market. Jay Horowitz began producing Marx clone playsets under license using the 'Marx Toys' name. These sets used repo figures and accessories and did feature some nice repo tin-litho centerpieces which were slightly different than their original Marx counterparts. Other playset manufacturers appeared but their sets didn't offer tin pieces, that is until Classic Toy Soldiers (CTS) of Leawood, Kansas stepped in and started offering tin pieces of all new design. One of those was this 'Impressive Two Story Civil War Mansion' (as proclaimed by their catalog) measuring in at 17 1/2" (44.5cm) L x 4 1/2" (11.4cm) D w/o porch / 6" (15.2cm) D w/porch x 8" (20.3cm) H. It's a hybrid structure consisting of metal walls, foam roofs and chimneys, and a repo of the same plastic porch used for Marx's ACW Mansion. While the lithography isn't nearly as bright or captivating as the Marx version, it is probably more accurate in its representation of Antebellum plantation architecture. I'm not sure exactly when this came out as the older CTS catalogs had the annoying trait of  not listing dates of their publication! My recollections are that it came out approximately 1996 or '97. I can tell you it cost $79.95 plus $8 shipping according to the catalog I have on hand. This is a terrific house which can find a home with a playset, a train layout, or on a mantel display putz. Enjoy!

Without the porch