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  • Tootsietoy Cracker Jack Firetruck

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    I felt the need to post an American made Fire Apparatus, and so please forgive this example is not in the best of condition. Perhaps forgivable since it dates to around the time of the second World War. Prior to the widespread child safety laws, trinkets such as this were often included in various snacks, not only stateside. With those days long behind us now, these tiny toys are all but forgotten.

    I don't have many Fire vehicles in my collection, with a collection the size of mine sometimes lines have to be drawn, but I fully understand and respect those who focus on First Responder vehicles, and I fully understand the passion behind such. My hat is off to you!

    This time of year is always bittersweet for me. My birthday, the third birthday for this site quietly passed this past week, and then more somber reminders as the highly regarded English Monarch has passed the torch to her son, and tomorrow is the anniversary that will always overshadow my birthday.

    So it just seemed fitting that an American Fire Engine was the appropriate model to highlight for this week. I only wish it could have been more.
    The image file limits have been reset. Upper limits now are 100,000 when we have some images that exceed 5,000,000. I've set the pixels for no more than 1000 across the longest side, so if you resize to that all should be well. (The limits are larger than what I typically use, and my images turn out just fine, so I know it shouldn't be a problem)

    Thank you for your understanding.

  • #2
    Funny you mention this--my grandmother and I were at a store and she brought up the Cracker Jack prizes--and I mentioned most were diecast or tinplate back through the '50s; whereas now they're just flimsy paper junk.

    For what it is, the detail is pretty good. I have noticed most Tootsietoy apparatus was at least inspired by Chicago FD apparatus at the time, so does "CFD" mean "Chicago Fire Dept."?
    Last edited by cody6268; 09-10-2022, 01:51 PM.

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    • #3
      Neat little fire engine. Is this something from your recent trip to the flea market, or maybe past, I know you had some small Cracker Jack type vehicles on the table when we were there the one time, but don't remember what all they were.

      I don't remember all what kind of prizes they had when I was a kid, but it seems like they were plastic snap together things, like spinning tops and such.
      Doug

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      • #4
        Originally posted by cody6268 View Post
        Funny you mention this--my grandmother and I were at a store and she brought up the Cracker Jack prizes--and I mentioned most were diecast or tinplate back through the '50s; whereas now they're just flimsy paper junk.

        For what it is, the detail is pretty good. I have noticed most Tootsietoy apparatus was at least inspired by Chicago FD apparatus at the time, so does "CFD" mean "Chicago Fire Dept."?
        Tootsietoy was from around the Chicago area, as was Midgetoy and some others (I think Kidco was headquartered there as well).

        Chicago, CrackerJack...either one could be the Fire Dept!
        The image file limits have been reset. Upper limits now are 100,000 when we have some images that exceed 5,000,000. I've set the pixels for no more than 1000 across the longest side, so if you resize to that all should be well. (The limits are larger than what I typically use, and my images turn out just fine, so I know it shouldn't be a problem)

        Thank you for your understanding.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Douglas View Post
          Neat little fire engine. Is this something from your recent trip to the flea market, or maybe past, I know you had some small Cracker Jack type vehicles on the table when we were there the one time, but don't remember what all they were.

          I don't remember all what kind of prizes they had when I was a kid, but it seems like they were plastic snap together things, like spinning tops and such.
          This was from the previous trip, when we met up last. It was among the Cracker Jack issues I picked up, but as there were several I'm not surprised you don't recall this one.

          My memory is vague, but I remember some plastic trinkets, a spinning top is likely, perhaps a whistle in an odd shape. By the time I was a teen the "prizes" were water based tattoos and such, I haven't gone through a box of Cracker Jack in probably almost 40 years, so I don't have a clue what is in them now.
          The image file limits have been reset. Upper limits now are 100,000 when we have some images that exceed 5,000,000. I've set the pixels for no more than 1000 across the longest side, so if you resize to that all should be well. (The limits are larger than what I typically use, and my images turn out just fine, so I know it shouldn't be a problem)

          Thank you for your understanding.

          Comment


          • #6
            Couldn't resist doing a search of OFAS:
            .

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            • #7
              Well it looks like Cracker Jack's has gone to modern technology for their prizes these days, this video dates back to 2016

              Doug

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              • #8
                Wes that was a very interesting post.i enjoyed reading it.

                Doug, CPD is for the chicago fire dept.

                Wes was close..cracker jacks were made on the south side of Chicago on Cicero ave.

                the tootsie roll plant was less than a mile down Cicero ave.

                2 miles east of those two is the Oreo cookies plant.

                tootsie diecast car plant was on the northside of Chicago.

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                • #9
                  A very appropriate toy to share on this weekend. A neat little Tootsietoy/Cracker Jack fire engine. Awesome!

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                  • #10
                    A very interesting read!!

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                    • #11
                      I have a couple of examples of the CFD toy:
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                      Close inspection of the green one seems to suggest it was a 'repaint' by a previous owner....my pics don't show it well, but there seem to be some bits of "red" showing thru some of the chipped paint, though most of the chipped spots don't show any red at all....just bare gray metal as in the side shown above. They represent a "piston" pumper....evidenced by the "pressure dome" ahead of the engine.

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                      They're pretty thin metal as seen in the warping/smashing of the red one.

                      Now, I haven't researched the origin of these other than what I was told when I found/bought them. Seems reasonable they were actually Cracker Jack toys at some point, but I have scads of tiny fire apparatus that would have been perfect for Cracker Jack inclusion, based on their sizes.

                      This one was sold as a "Cracker Jack" premium:
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                      Tinplate; it's possible it came flat and had to be bent/folded into the 'finished fire engine', but I have no evidence of that.

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                      The "pressure dome" of a piston pumper, in case you missed it, is the same thing you see on that Hot Wheels Old Number 5.

                      These were also sold as "Cracker Jack toys", and were little "kits" with parts that had to be put together after removing from the snack package:
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                      I don't know what the brown one was supposed to be, since I got it without the 'attachment' or parts. But it appears to be a similar casting. Perhaps the original was a "snorkel"? There's no "siren/light" for the brown one...no place to 'attach' such a piece, no markings anything goes there (the purple one tells you where the "light" goes, as well as the ladder.) The brown one also has what may be intended as "hose reels" along both sides, just aft of the cab and front wheels. They're unrealistically long....but if it's a fire truck, what else would they represent? Hydrant suction hoses?

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                      Purple says "Lite Here" with arrow pointing to the hole ahead of the drivers seat; brown says "Boom Here" with arrows pointing to the hole.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BOB-LO View Post
                        Couldn't resist doing a search of OFAS:
                        .

                        The link includes some Empire plastic tiny fire apparatus. I know the Empire fire engines were sold as a set in "five and dime" stores in the fifties. Certainly it is possible they also came separately as Cracker Jack toys, but that's up for investigation. I didn't view the video Bob posted, so if it mentions any of these, so be it. One of my earliest memories is of being allowed to play with some of the Empire fire engines when we visited Grandmother's house in the 50s. She must have kept cereal premiums found in all her grandkids' breakfasts through all those years, just for us to play with when the 'adults' were talking and laughing and having their own 'good ol time'...

                        For example, here's a group of Empire fire apparatus:
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                        They're no longer than about an inch-and-a-half each, but the aerial is 3.25 inches long.

                        The video (now I've seen it) notes there were LOTS of little "charms" inside the boxes. in the old days; those "charms" would be toys with a loop to attach to a "charm bracelet"; I have quite a few tiny fire hydrants and other similar "charm bracelet" toys that have those 'loops'; perhaps they're all also "Cracker Jack" premiums?

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                        Last edited by b2young; 09-17-2022, 10:44 AM.

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by b2young View Post

                          The link includes some Empire plastic tiny fire apparatus...
                          .
                          .


                          Like I previously wrote:
                          .
                          "!"
                          .

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                          • #14
                            I will second or third Bob's Thanks for adding to the information on the Cracker Jack fire engines. I, too, have the Empire set. Like you they were at my grandma's house for me to play with when in the days when we lived in southern Idaho and would go visit her outside of Spokane. When we moved to where she lived, they stayed at her house for me to play with when she would watch me when my folks were gone. After she died, I brought them home with me and they are still part of my collection.

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                            • #15
                              is there an echo in here?...

                              Those are awesome!
                              The image file limits have been reset. Upper limits now are 100,000 when we have some images that exceed 5,000,000. I've set the pixels for no more than 1000 across the longest side, so if you resize to that all should be well. (The limits are larger than what I typically use, and my images turn out just fine, so I know it shouldn't be a problem)

                              Thank you for your understanding.

                              Comment

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