Thursday, November 17, 2005

Visit to the Schieble Toy Company Part 1

My current job subjects me to a fair amount of travel. In order to break up the monotony I sometimes arrange to visit a local site of interest such as a museum or collection.

Last summer I had the unique opportunity to spend some time in Dayton, Ohio. As a collector of DP Clark, Dayton Friction Toy Works and Schieble Toy Company friction cars I thought it would be fun to track down the original factory location for one of these businesses. Little did I know at the time that one week later I would be standing in the Schieble Toy Company's original factory building. What follows is the story of how I came to be there and what I learned about the company.

One week before I was scheduled to travel to Dayton, Ohio I began my websearch. After a good deal of websearching on these three companies over three days, the only thing I ran across was an obscure reference to a building called The Ice House and a real estate agent by the name of Steve Seboldt. On a whim I decided to send Steve an email. Here is what I said:


I ran a across a reference to you and the Schieble Toy Company in Dayton Ohio while researching the Dayton Friction Toy Works and the Schieble Toy Company. In this reference I interpreted that the Ice Avenue Lofts may be the original location of this company. Do you have any information on this? I am a collector of Schieble Toys and will be in Dayton and would like to find the building if it still exists.

Thanks for your help,


One hour later I received Steve's response. Here it is:


I am writing you from The Schieble Toy Company. It is now called the Ice Avenue Loft. I live here. I have some info I can send you. I also have a picture from 1918 (seen above.) I will send you a picture of how the building looks now.

I am 100% sure this is the Schieble Toy Company. You can see the name on the old picture (not visible in the web image.) Plus I verified it with the Williams Directories from that period.
I also have a piece of a packing crate in my loft that has the Schieble name on it. On the other side is a name of a company in Philadelphia

When are you coming? I would love to show you around.


What a find. With one email it looked as if I had discovered the location of the Schieble Toy Company. Not only that, but I now had an open invitation to visit the property.

Please see part 2 of this article where I will post some more information on my visit to the Schieble Toy Company and some images of my current friction car collection.


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