Toys

There was no shortage of iconic toys in the 70s, many of which that were far more interesting than any video game. Here, we tip the hat to an assortment of playthings that we begged for back in the day.

Oct 252013
 
Creepy Crawlers

Kids have a fascination for bugs. Not only are they fun to play with, but a well-placed insect can induce a scream from an unsuspecting sibling. Bugs have minds of their own, however, scurrying at the least opportune moments and ruining the fun. Thankfully, with the invention of Creepy Crawlers, the days of uncooperative insects were over. Now you could make your own rubber replicas, much to your little sister’s horror.

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Aug 162013
 
View-Master

Many a 1970s kid witnessed the wonders of the world through a simple little toy called the View-Master. Seemingly every store and vacation spot displayed huge racks filled with the familiar white discs, each containing a collection of three-dimensional images from a plethora of exotic locales, and just about every 70s TV show, cartoon or movie in existence.

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Aug 052013
 
Click Clacks

Despite the best of intentions, not all toys that reach the marketplace are entirely safe. Take Click Clacks for example (also known as Clackers, Clack Balls, Kerbangers, etc). They seemed harmless enough – just a couple of acrylic spheres attached by a string – but history tells us that they were eventually deemed so dangerous, they were taken off the market.

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Jul 312013
 
Hoppity Hop

For youngsters not quite ready to tackle the pogo stick, but eager to get their own bouncy fix, the 1970s offered the Hoppity Hop. Consisting of a large rubber sphere with a handle (or head, depending on the model) affixed to the top, this was a coveted toy among the younger set – at least until your legs grew long enough for a Big Wheel.

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Jul 252013
 
Little Professor

The 1970s ushered in an era of electronic games, from arcades to simple handheld devices. Calculator maker Texas Instruments thought there might be a little room for something more educational, and introduced a device called the Little Professor. It looked a lot like a typical calculator with one distinct difference – it didn’t give you the answers.

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Jul 172013
 
Slip 'n Slide

Kids without easy access to a pool on Long Island in the 1970s had to find all sorts of creative ways to stay cool in the summer. Luckily, the folks at Wham-O toys were there to help, via the ever-popular Slip ‘n Slide. Simply roll out the narrow plastic mat, attach a garden hose, and do try to make sure that the end of the slide doesn’t lead to a tree, driveway or sidewalk..

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Jul 092013
 
Water Rockets

Even before the space race, kids have long held a fascination for rockets. Toy stores have long offered an ample supply of plastic replicas, but if you wanted to fly one in the 1970s, you had two choices – either take up the involved hobby of model rocketry, or just buy a water-powered plastic replica. Fill it up, give it a few pumps, fire it skyward and hope it returns.

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