National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of Toy Fire Engine Toy Fire Engine
Rendered by Charles Henning (artist), c. 1942
watercolor, pen and ink, and graphite on paper
overall: 34.7 x 55.4 cm (13 11/16 x 21 13/16 in.) Original IAD Object: 19 3/4" long; 4 1/2" wide; 6 7/8" high
Index of American Design
Not on View
From the Tour: Toys from the Index of American Design
Object 14 of 26

This toy model is an elegant and meticulous example of a nineteenth-century horse-drawn fire engine. The engine consists of a vertical cylindrical boiler at the back mounted on two pierced wheels. Cast iron was used for this model. While cast iron had been used earlier in the century for some toys and for parts such as wheels, miniature vehicles made entirely of iron did not appear until the 1880s. The toy was made between about 1885 and 1900 by the Ives Company of Bridgeport, Connecticut, a pioneer toy maker whose products are considered by collectors to be among the finest made. The name "Phoenix," cast in relief on the face of the door at the back of the boiler, was frequently used by Ives to identify its toys.

Full Screen Image
Artist Information

«back to gallery»continue tour