Founded as the Novelty Iron Works by Edward H. and Charles Morgan in 1868, the forerunner of the Arcade Manufacturing Company conducted business in two small buildings with a staff of ten people. In 1874 the company expanded, erecting a new and larger structure at the cost of $25,000. They continued at the new location until 1885, when the Novelty Iron Works was discontinued and reorganized as the Arcade Manufacturing Company by Cyrus Tobias, Edward H. Morgan and Albert Baumgarten. The first products of the Arcade factory were a cork extractor and a screen door hinge, but within two years they began assembling box type coffee mills and other small cast iron machinery for home use. In 1888 their first toy, a miniature box coffee mill was made. In 1908 the animal banks started. The horse was first, and Arcade made horses in a variety of different poses. Later a lion, seal, pig, buffalo, cow, rhinoceros and even a rat was added. More animal banks followed in 1910, along with other bank figures such as a safe, clock and mailbox. They made coffee grinders from their inception until the 1930s. Edgar and Charles Morgan invented new grinders for Arcade in their early years.

Yellow Cab

In 1921, secretary and sales manager Isaac P. Gassman went to Chicago to visit a friend who was a former resident of Freeport and, at the time, was president of Yellow Cab Company. The two men agreed that Arcade Mfg. would manufacture a miniature copy of the well-known Yellow Cab. As late as 1939, Arcade's toy line included over 300 toy items. Yellow Cab was their first successful toy. Andy Gump and Chester Gump in His Pony Cart were other popular toys for collectors. Arcade also made toy banks, doll house furniture and cast-iron penny toys.

The Rockford (Illinois) Morning Star of September 10, 1939, announced: 'Arcade plant, one of the largest toy manufacturing concerns in the country, has been operating at top speed during recent weeks to complete the vast quantity of trucks, autos, buses, plows, banks,lawnmowers, hatchets, vises, wrecking cars, ice wagons, windmills, bowling alleys, stoves, circus wagons, fire engines and numerous other articles that soon will be delivered to retail counters throughout the world.'

In 1946 Arcade was purchased by Rockwell Manufacturing Company of Buffalo, New York but ceased operations in 1953.

Arcade value

What's it worth? Take a look at this Arcade price guide: sold listings for a value indication.

Arcade forum (7 comments)

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Judy Zink - May 30, 2017

I have employee picture from Jan 31, 1927 my grandfather work there.
►reply: Wow, great! If you would like to share, you can send a scan to fabtintoys gmail com and I'll put it on this page.

Tim Grothaus - March 5, 2015

I have a international dump and also a school bus and a circus wagon with 2 lions and 2 tigers that I would like to sell please advise my best options to do this thank you
►reply: You could try ebay or one of the many auction houses specialized in toys, for example specialauctionservices.com but there are many more which you can find through Google.

Jim Comp - January 29, 2014

i have a no. 371 91/2 inch interional dump truckcan not find any info on itcan you help ?
►reply: I don't know, but there are a few Arcade trucks for sale.

Julie - October 21, 2013

i would love to have a truck restored. It was a childhood toy of my husbands - he grew up on a farm in wisconsin. Can anyone recommend a good restorer?

Mike - March 4, 2013

I have Arcade No 108L Ford Model A all complete except for the Driver.I see drivers for sale on Ebay,but would love to see a picture of the Correct one for my car.Can you help?

Matt - October 3, 2012

Hello,I have an Arcade taxi that is orange colored and the wheels are metal as is the spare on the back. It is 5" in length and has Arcade stamped inside the upper dood area and No. 8 gs stamped on the bottom frame. Also has the Arcade sticker on the right side of the hood. It does not have a driver or a place that looked like a driver would have been attached. I see other similar ones but they are longer and some have rubber tires. Mine has a cast iron grill and not mesh. Any info. would be great. Thank you.

Barry - July 8, 2011

I have an arcade toy caterpillar crawler with chain tracks with a cast iron man sitting on it ,and it has an arcade mane on the bottom ,and on the side of the seat it says caterpillar ,and on the side of the grill it has ten on it ,and i have not been able to find any information on it ,nor have I ever seen another one like it ! Can any one help me ? Thank you !