This is a large size set of colorful Victorian blocks which you just don’t see anymore and are difficult to find. Considered an early learning device, these 19th century alphabet blocks were made of lithographed paper on wood, with scenes of children’s themes seen in fairy tales, or children at whimsical play, and so designed to “stack” them in a particular alphabetical order or spelling game. When finished playing with, they were put away, in descending order, one block inside the other and condensed into the largest block, thus the term “nesting blocks” was used.
These are probably of American manufacture by The Crandall Toy Company of Montrose, Pennsylvania . (Note: they specialized in, what they called, “Mammoth Alphabet Blocks” which usually were made with the base block at 6″ square). Since some of the paper is lacking on the side of the large 6″ block, ihe maker can’t be verified. If not, it would still have been made by one of the other two major toy companies like Bliss or McLoughlin, who produced these types of toys.
This is a complete set with all (7) blocks in tact; the wooden blocks are well made and dovetailed top to bottom at each corner and structurally very sound. It is very hard to find a complete set, because of the young age of children using these; they would have damaged or lost a block here and there, due to their rough play. There are paper losses to some of the surfaces but most of the paper remains, and is original and in bright colors (see images); a delightful piece of Americana.
Dimensions: 30 1/2″ high (when stacked) x 6 1/8″ square at the base block. The top block is 2 5/8″ square. The other blocks graduate in size between those two top and bottom blocks.