The Gong Bell Manufacturing Company was
established as a partnership in 1866 by H. H. Abbe, E. C. Barton, E. G.
Cone and A. H. Conklin to produce bells and toys. Gong Bell antique toys
are more limited than some brands as the company was not in existence
past the 1960s.
The company was incorporated under the laws of the state of Connecticut
in April 1899. In 1872, Barton patented a toy called “Revolving
Chimes” described as “a pair of cast brass gongs, mounted between
two malleable iron wheels.” This was the beginning of Gong Bell’s
toy making history. The company also manufactured the first foot bell
ever used on automobiles.
After re-organization in 1921, Gong Bell introduces one of the most
successful toys invented at the time. It was a toy telephone with a bell
and movable receiver hook. This was also the time Gong Bell started
concentrating on its wooden toy future. During World War II, the Gong
Bell Mfg. Co. also took on military contracts to make hardware for
It is believed that with the introduction of plastics in toy making, the
Gong Bell Mfg. Co. could not complete since their toys were made mostly
of wood and metal, thus closing the company in the 60’s.
There are few collectors of Gong Bell made toys. Most collectors who
have Gong Bell antique toys in their collection have them because they
fit into their category of interest.