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Farmers Almanac
The 2017 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Most Popular Christmas Toys and Games Since 1900

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Most Popular Christmas Toys and Games Since 1900

With the holiday shopping season in full swing, toy stores everywhere are making sure they have the latest “must-have” item in stock in plenty of time for Christmas.

And like everything, these fads and trends tend to come and go from year to year. That hot new toy from last year — the one parents battled traffic jams and long lines at shopping malls to get — disappeared under the bed by January 1st, never to be seen again. Some never went out of style, and simply re-emerged decades later.

Here’s a brief look at the must-have games and toys that have been on every kid’s list over the last century:

1900s
Hopscotch, 3D viewers, Kewpie dolls, ping pong, Raggedy Ann, Teddy bears

1910s
Tinker toys, Ouija boards, erector sets, Raggedy Ann dolls

1920s
Crossword puzzles, mah-jongg, electric model trains, Crayola Crayons, Yo-yos

1930s
Mickey Mouse, pinball, Shirley Temple dolls

1940s
Hummel figurines, LEGOs, LP records, Magic 8-Ball, electric train sets

1950s
Barbie dolls, Frisbees, hula hoops, Pogo sticks, Silly Putty, Slinkies, Chatty Cathy dolls, Gumby and Pokey, Play-doh, Pez, Mr. Potato Head

1960s
GI Joes, Barbie dolls, lava lamps, Easy Bake Oven, troll dolls, Ouija boards, Flatsy dolls, Hot Wheels, Lite Brite, Barrel Full of Monkeys, Operation, Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots, Etch-a-Sketch, Mrs. Beasley, Twister, Candy Land

1970s
Mood rings, Pet Rocks, Star Wars, Barbie dolls, Monopoly, Nerf, Duncan Yo-Yos, Stretch Armstrong, Chrissy and Velvet, Matchbox cars, Battleship

1980s
Cabbage Patch dolls, Chia Pets, Rubik’s Cubes, Transformers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Trivial Pursuit, skateboards, Nintendo, Smurfs, Jenga

1990s
Beanie Babies, Teletubbies, Tickle Me Elmo, Furby, Barney, Power Rangers, computer games, rollerblades, Rug Rats, Pogs, American Girl dolls

2000s
Razor Scooters, Pokemon, Bratz dolls, Teddy Ruxpin, LEGOs, Zhu Zhu pets,Baby Alive, Bobbleheads, iPods, iPhones, and iPads; Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, Playstation, Guitar Hero, Finding Nemo items

What’s on your kids’ or grandkid’s list this year? Which toys or games were on your list? Which ones did we leave off? Tell us in the comments below.

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20 comments

1 Teresa { 12.26.16 at 7:10 pm }

1950s Tiny Tears Doll
1980s Ghost Busters toys
1970s-80s Big Wheels
1990s Micro Machines, GI Joe

2 louann { 12.26.16 at 4:53 pm }

1990″s My Child and My Buddy

3 N. Kildahl { 12.26.16 at 3:48 pm }

Brenda, that name is actually Norwegian. Husker Du. Means ‘do you remember’. It sounds familiar but I can’t place that game.

4 Alison { 12.25.16 at 7:17 pm }

1996-2000 Barney, Disney Princesses, scooters, heelie skates, big wheels
2004-2008 Monster High Dolls, High School Musical, Hannah Montana, Friends Legos, Polly Pocket, Barbie Ocean Liner
2016- PS4, Razor scooter, Nike, Under Armour, Elf on the Shelf, WWE, Baseball, Football, battery powered vehicles, Netflix, Drones, Hoverboard

5 Wanda burgess { 12.10.16 at 12:02 am }

Lucy locket…..I miss her as she burned in my house fire when I was 9..1967

6 Susan Higgins { 12.08.16 at 9:42 am }

Cynthia McCarthy – yes, they are there! Those were quite popular. My younger brother had to have them!

7 Cynthia McCarthy { 12.08.16 at 7:06 am }

I think in the 90’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles were very popular. What about Hot Box cars.

8 marie mjlstead { 12.07.16 at 2:41 pm }

Tiny Tears Doll

9 marie mjlstead { 12.07.16 at 2:40 pm }

1950’s Tiny Tear’s

10 myrtle { 12.07.16 at 11:14 am }

What? No Colorforms for the ’50’s? LOL.

11 james kruse { 12.07.16 at 8:18 am }

He-Man

12 Susan Higgins { 12.07.16 at 8:48 am }

Hi Alys, Barbie was listed in the 50s but you’re right — she was huge in the 60s and 70s so we’ve added her there. Good catch!

13 Alys { 12.07.16 at 6:42 am }

Barbie?

14 Debjt { 12.07.16 at 1:36 am }

Slinky in the 60s and Atari in the early 80s

15 Carolyn Inman { 12.06.16 at 10:56 pm }

Incredible Edibles, Thumbelina dolls, Beatles wigs, Lincoln logs, Garbage Pail Kids, Jack in the Box

16 Marie { 12.06.16 at 8:05 pm }

1960’s-Marvel the Mustang….1970’s-Stable Mate Horses

17 Laura { 12.06.16 at 9:56 pm }

https://youtu.be/tk5qmRPNTRs this is a link to the youtube video of a tv commercial for the busker du game.. if this site blocks links just search the game name in your search engine.

18 Brenda { 12.06.16 at 8:05 pm }

There was a game in the late 50’s I’m not sure of the spelling but it was called something like ” Hoos Ker Do ” that’s a phonetic sound out. I remember we played it a lot, does anyone remember any game near that name.

19 Susan Brown { 12.06.16 at 5:39 pm }

Creepy Crawlers, Easy Bake Ovens

20 Lorraine Taggart Measor { 12.06.16 at 5:29 pm }

My folks bought me one of those kewpie dolls back in the 50’s and still have it!

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