Real Happiness

Toys Vs T.V.

A portrait photo of a little girl and her doll
A portrait photo of
a little girl and her doll
Most poor Victorian children made their own toys to play with by carving wood into small toy boats and cars. They also made paper aeroplanes and hats because this was inexpensive. Girls played hopscotch and used whatever bits of rope they could find for skipping. Today we still play games like hopscotch and skipping with our friends because they are fun.

Rich Victorians toys were made from more expensive materials. They would have train sets which were metal whereas poor Victorian children had wooden ones that were pulled along on a piece of string. The train sets we play with nowadays are similar but more technical.

Sometimes rich Victorian children had expensive rocking horses; with hair that was real horse-hair. Rich Victorians played with marbles that were glossy and made out of glass, poor Victorian children played with marbles made out of stone. A family c. 1880 the little boy is wearing a costume and pulling a toy horse
A family c. 1880 the little boy is wearing
a costume and pulling a toy horse
They would play against each other and the poor children would win marbles from the rich children.

All these games are still played nowadays. The biggest change is that we have more electronic games and T.V but during the Victorian times they didn’t have any electricity. 


This exhibition is part of a wider sustainability project delivered through the Rural Museums East Partnership. It is funded by Renaissance East of England.

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