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 Old Toys

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N. N. Hill

by Richard Mueller Jr.

N. N. Hill Brass Company
East Hampton, Connecticut
1889 1960

N.N. Hill antique toys have a history that, like many toy companies, began with its founder and namesake. Norman N. Hill began his career in the finishing department of the Barton Bell Company when he was eighteen years old. In January 1889, with a capital of $800, he started his own bell company being the first to stamp steel bells rather than casting. In 1912, the business was incorporated under the name N. N. Hill Brass Company, Inc. and became known as the largest factory in the world devoted to bells and toys. After receiving a contract to produce Walt Disney toys in the 1930s, their wooden toy manufacturing became the major production of their factory. N. N. Hill Brass Company closed their doors in the early 1960s, making N. N. Hill antique toys coveted by antique toy collectors.

More N. N. Hill toys can be found under N. N. Hill Brass section.


Elephant Chime w/4 Studded Wheels

Floor Chime #53
1920
3.5"L x 2.75"W
Nickeled bells. Frame painted in colors
No. 543-1/2 - six 1-1/8" bells
No. 552 - six 7/8" bells

Floor Chime

Floor Chime #547
1920
3.5"L x 3.25"H

The Hunter #122
1905
5" x 6"
As the toy is pulled, the rabbit peeps out of the hole teasing the hunter to shoot with the rifle attached to his hands. Small bell under the platform rings as the toy is pulled.

Telephone #518
1920

Cat and Negro Boy #120
1905
4.5" x 6"
Boy pulling the tail of a surprised cat on green platform. Even rarer than the toy pictured is one in which the boy's face is turned the same as the cat.

Watermelon Bell Toy #151
1905
9"L x 4.5"W
Painted cast iron. Two boys holding each end of the black saw move back and forth over three watermelons. Gives the appearance of sawing the melons in half.

Alligator and Boy #117
1905
5" x 6"
Painted in colors. The movement of the toy bounces the boy and rings the gong.

Floor Chime #545
1920
3.25"L x 3.25"H
Wheels painted, bells nickeled
No. 545 - 2-1/4" gongs, six 7/8" bells
No. 544 - 2-1/4" gongs, six 1-1/8" bells
No. 547 - 1-3/4" gongs, six 7/8" bells
No. 548 - 1-3/4" gongs, six 1-1/8" bells

Telephone Chimes #515
1905
1.75" Gongs
Nickel wheels. Frame painted in colors

Swiss Chimes #550, #557
1905
Nickel frame, wheels and Nickel plated gongs. #550 - 2.25", 2.3.75" and 2.625" gongs
#557 - 1 each 2.5" and 2.625" gongs

Rocking Horse Chime
7"L x 3"H x 1.75"W

Telephone Chimes #518
1.5" Gongs
Nickel plated gongs. #521 has 2" gongs

Floor Chimes #565
1920
Nickel-plated with 2-1/4" gong and 2-7/8" wheels

Monkey Mobile Bell Toy #115
1905
5.25" x 6.5"
Painted cast iron in bright colors. When drawn along the floor, the monkey rings the bell by striking the bell hammer with a coconut.

Stick Chime
Five spokes wheel with bumps

Two Horse Jingle Chime
This toy could also be a Kirby.

Teddy Bear Chimes #546
1920
4"L x 3.5"H x 2"W
Nickel-plated bells and wheels. Frame and figure painted in colors.

Jonah & Whale #119
1890
5.5"L
Painted in colors. As the toy is pulled, Jonah pops out of the whale's mouth as the bell rings.

Horse Chime
5"L x 2.25"H x 1.75"W

Telephone Push Toy #540
1905
1.75" Gongs
1905 NN Hill & Watrous. One of the early telephone toys. As the toy is pushed, the figures rock back and forth while talking on the telephone. Nickel plated.

Telephone Chime

Elephant Holding Bell
6.5"L x 4.5"H x 2.5"W
Msg bell

Pony Chime
1920
10"L x 4"H x 3.5"W
$250 - $300

10 Jingle Bell Horse Chime

Giraffe Push Toy #12
1905
A playful giraffe with a girl rider makes this toy different and fun. Bell attached to the giraffe rings as the toy is pulled. Toy is nickel-plated.

Boy Fishing #118
1905
5.5" x 6.5"
Painted in colors. As the toy moves, the boy, feeling a bite, jerks the fish from the water.

Dog Push Toy #530
1913
Nickel-plated. Playful puppy riding on top. Wire attached to his platform and the axle would rock him up and down as the wooden pole pushed the toy. A small clapper under his platform rings the gong attached on the back

Elephant Bell Toy #116
1905
4.5"H x 6.5"L x 2.75"W
Cast iron painted in colors with nickel-plated bell held in his trunk. The oblong base looks like grassy mound. Wire that connects the trunk to the axle causes the trunk to move up and down when pulled vigorously ringing the bell.
PC #1 2/91 (E) $700
Sotheby's 10/01 (E) $2,280

Floor Chimes #504
1920
2-1/4" Gongs, 2-7/8" wheels
Wheels painted red.

Floor Chimes
1920
Wheels covered with Chenille Gimp
No. 556 - 3-1/2" wheels, 2-1/4" gong
No. 581 - 4" wheels, 2-1/4" gong
No. 583 - 4" wheels, 2-1/4" gong
No. 584 - 5" wheels, 2-1/2" gong
wpe58.jpg (32408 bytes)
Telephone Chimes #511
1920
1" and 1-3/4" nickel-plated gongs. As the toy is pushed, the clapper in the center rocks back and forth hitting the two gongs at each end. Heart-shaped wheels
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Push Chimes #606
1905
Wheels and bells are nickel-plated. Coppered steel frame. 18" stained wood.
wpe5C.jpg (58625 bytes)
Telephone Chimes #25
1905
1-3/4" gongs
Two children talk on the telephone as the toy is pulled. Nickel-plated.
wpe5E.jpg (75149 bytes)
Wind Mill #15
1926
16"H
Finished in red, blue and black enamel - red tower, black tank, blue dome, and red vane and wheel. Dome has brass bushing. Built of cold rolled steel, firmly braced.
wpe60.jpg (50100 bytes)
Horse and Rider #575
1920
Jockey riding on his saddle on top of gong.
wpe62.jpg (58461 bytes)
Indian Rider Push Toy #570
1913
Detailed Indian riding his horse. This toy may have been made for only one year, making it very rare.
wpe64.jpg (32385 bytes)
Floor Chime #503
1920
Bells 1-3/4" and 6-7/8"
wpe66.jpg (22892 bytes)
Two Horses 2 Bell Chime
wpe68.jpg (30055 bytes)
Horse Chime
This toy may also be a Kirby.
wpe6A.jpg (37605 bytes)
Elephant Jingle Bell
7.5"L x 3.25"H x 4.5"W
This toy is believed to be NN Hill or Kirby.
wpe6C.jpg (25315 bytes)
2 Horse 4 Bell Chime
wpe6E.jpg (42616 bytes)
Double Ripper Sled Bell Toy #150
1905
4" x 9"
Painted in colors. When sled is in motion, the bell rings.
PC #1 3/00 (G) $5,000
wpe70.jpg (61622 bytes)
Happy Hooligan Automobile #121
1905
5.25" x 6.5"
Cheerful figure riding in his "car". This was one of the first automobile toys. Small bell under the floor board rings as the toy is pulled. Painted in colors.
PC #1 8/95 (G) $1,650
wpe72.jpg (47902 bytes)
The Cossack and the Jap. #61
1902
7.5"L
The figures represent Cossack and the Jap. cavalryman engaged in a fierce contest. The war flags of Russia and Japan on the platform are painted true to color and design. When rolled forward the figures pivot, hitting their sticks as the suspended bells ring. Very rare toy.
Sotheby's 10/01 (E) $19,150