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Vintage toys on display at museum

Gerald Griffin, president of the Northeast Oakland Historical Society, views the vintage toy collection now on display at the 1 N. Washington St. museum. Photo by C.J. Carnacchio. (click for larger version)
August 15, 2012 - Long before video games and computers ruled the day, it was a child's imagination that fueled his or her play.

Hands and minds, not circuits and electricity, made toys come alive to delight little girls and boys.

Now through the end of August, the Northeast Oakland Historical Museum (1 N. Washington St.) is featuring a display of classic toys from the 1950s through 1970s.

From G.J. Joe and Barbie to Tonka and Nylint construction trucks, the showcase has a definite air of nostalgia about it, especially with those antique metal fire trucks.

"We did this (display) once before and it went over real big," said Oxford resident Gerald Griffin, president of the historical society and museum curator.

All of the toys at one time belonged to Griffin's lucky children. "I have three boys and one girl," he said.

The toys bring back fond memories for Griffin, particularly of Christmases past when most of them were unwrapped and played with for the very first time.

"I get just as big a bang out of seeing them now as I did then," he said with a big smile.

Located in historic downtown Oxford, the museum is open every Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday from 12-4 p.m.

Private tours, group tours and field trip opportunities are available upon request.

For more information, please visit the museum on-line at www.neohs.net or call (248) 628-8413.

CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.
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