Who Were Fisher and Price?

Last week’s post on the Fisher-Price Little People garage got us wondering: Who the heck were these guys, Fisher and Price?

So we dug around and discovered that the original founders of the toy company back in 1930 consisted of, yes, businessmen Herman Fisher and Irving Price, but also a children's book author and illustrator named Margaret Evans Price (yes, married to Irving, so there were actually two Prices), and a toy store owner named Helen Schelle. While the businessmen were instrumental in launching the company, it was actually the two women who collaborated on most of the company’s early, successful products, like Dr. Doodle, the duck push-pull toy pictured above that was based on a character from her children's books. Also, a lot of the early success of the company can be attributed to the fact that Helen Schelle had a lot of great connections in the incipient toy industry.

FP Queen Buzzy Bee, 1959

Still, the company is named after Herman Fisher and Irving Price, so let’s find out a little more about them.

Herman Fisher

Fisher hailed from Pennsylvania and went to Penn State. In fact, if you’ve ever spent any time on the Penn State campus, you may have seen The Fisher Plaza, which was named after him after he donated a nice chunk of change. Before founding Fisher-Price, he worked as Vice President and General Manager of All Fair, Inc., a toy and game manufacturer. When Fisher and a group of investors (including Price) unsuccessfully tried to buy All Fair Inc., they decided to start their own company instead. Here's something else interesting about Fisher: he's credited with coining the term “preschool toys” in 1934.

FP Humpty Dumpty, 1957

Irving Price

The most interesting thing I could dig up about Irving Price is that his middle name was Lanouette. Seriously, had he not married into the wealthy Evans family of New York, we may have never heard of the man. His wife Margaret was not only rich and a sort-of well-known children’s author, but her cousin Charles Evans Hughes was the 11th Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court. A couple other facts about Irving: He had a fairly long career as an executive with Woolworth before retiring young and getting himself elected Mayor of East Aurora, New York! But it was really his cash that helped start Fisher-Price, and for that, the world will be forever grateful.

FP Sports Car, 1959

FP Perky Pot, 1958

FP Play Family Farm, 1968

FP Play Family Sesame Street, 1975

FP Little People McDonald's Restaurant, 1990

Have a favorite Fisher-Price toy? Let us know in the comments below!

Pop Culture
The Sandlot Funko POPs! Are Coming

In 1993, a 1960s-set family film about a group of baseball-loving kids charmed youngsters and adults alike, and turned The Sandlot into a bona fide hit. Now, 25 years later, Scotty Smalls and the rest of the gang are getting the ultimate pop culture recognition as toy giant Funko has announced a line of POP! toys in the cast’s likeness. A black-eyed Smalls, Benny the Jet, Squints, and Ham (pointing to the fences) will all get their own vinyl figures—which you can also buy as a set—but that won’t be the end of The Sandlot fun.

GameStop shoppers will have exclusive access to The Beast, the baseball-chowing neighborhood hound, while Target will have a special two-pack featuring Squints and Wendy Peffercorn.

While the film’s official 25th anniversary is this month, you’ll have to wait until June to get your hands on these toys. But once you've got them, where, when, and how often you repeat the phrase “You’re killing me, Smalls” is completely up to you.

Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
Live Smarter
Act Fast to Exchange Your Expiring Toys "R" Us Gift Cards
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

When Toys "R" Us announced it would be liquidating its remaining stores in March, discussion turned from lamenting the famous toy chain’s demise to wondering what it meant for customers who purchased gift cards or had enrolled in their loyalty program.

Officially, the retailer has announced that its rewards program is no longer active and that Toys "R" Us gift cards will be redeemable in stores only through April 21. (The company is no longer accepting online orders.) For those who don’t think they’ll have interest in spending the gift card at a barren and toy-depleted TRU location by then, there's another solution: According to Today, Bed Bath & Beyond will accept TRU gift cards in exchange for a card that's good at any of their stores.

The catch? You won’t get the full face value of the card. A $25 Toys "R" Us card might be redeemable for only $16 at Bed Bath & Beyond. A $100 toy card has a roughly $64 value.

Bed Bath & Beyond is only offering this buyback program through Thursday, April 5, so you’ll need to act fast. And if you happen to be one of the poor souls holding a Geoffrey Birthday Club coupon, you're entirely out of luck. The giraffe isn't in a celebratory mood.

[h/t WTOL]


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