Welcome to a visual history of the Metalcraft Corporation of St. Louis. Below, you will find photos of rare and common Metalcraft toy trucks, airplanes and prototypes!
*Updating MAY 2013
- Photos of the rare BUSTER BROWN SHOES truck, along with the Hardy's Salt Art Deco truck can be found on our RARE METALCRAFT Page.
- Most folks know Metalcraft by the Spirit of St. Louis Airplane toys or the Heinz Pickle Huckster truck and the famous Coca-Cola trucks, but Metalcraft had already been in business in
one form or another for about 10 years by the time those trucks were produced. In late 1930 the genus of the Metalcraft Toy Truck began.
Metalcrafts were even sold in the Toy Shop inside the Cincinnati Train Station.
(Photo courtesy of "Cincinnati Union Terminal" published by the Cincinnati Railroad Club, Inc)
A scarce, early Metalcraft PLAY-ONS Original Box.
The first-issue Metalcraft tow truck, circa
Jan. 1931, also made later in the year and possibly into 1932 in an orange and green color combo.
Metalcraft also made an early tow truck in 1931 that has a red body/frame and a plain green tow bed,
usually no advertising is found on them.
Holmes Bakery, another rare variation, I know of only two examples of this truck. It appears the small bakeries are the
rarest variations of Metalcraft advertising toys. In this same catagory is the Thomas & Clarke versions, with some conflicting family history but probably no more than 4 made, two express and two stake style trucks.
A variation of the Goodrich Tire Truck (wrecker). Commercial Tires on W. Madison Street.
Some close-ups of the Metalcraft Waldorf Lager Beer Truck...one of the more elaborate art deco trucks made.
Forest City Brewery Truck,
commonly called the Waldorf Lager Truck. These are the original wood kegs. Eight came with the truck.
Metalcraft Toy Ad, circa 1932. Note that you could buy 4 spare Goodrich tires on a card!
Pure Oil Truck Box.
An original Metalcraft Toy Town Grocery Truck Box.
The Rare Metalcraft Robin Flyer
Hardy's Salt truck being robbed at gunpoint, circa 1931
Rare White House Stores truck
-The green and red steam shovel that could have gone with the green and red Machinery Hauler. This early shovel was most likely
the first steam shovel made and adveritised as being sold separately in 1931. No evidence yet that this shovel may have been sold in late 1930.
A Metalcraft Road building Set has been FOUND!
Metalcraft Spirit of St. Louis
What is it? It is the Metalcraft Crayon that came in the large Spirit of St. Louis sets (usually missing or found used)
The Red Logo truck.
A rarer variation than the typical green. This truck appears to have come before the green version and has thicker wheels.
It most likely dates to the very early months of 1931.
Very rare Palmolive Art deco truck Courtesy of the Greg Hostetler Collection.
Logo from the First Prize Albany Meats truck.
An Art deco version truck.
Two VERY RARE variations in the last series
of Art deco-style Metalcraft trucks.
'New England Stores'. It has dummy headlights and solid rubber wheels, this is the ONLY KNOWN example. c.(Andrew Tolch Collection)
The very last year may provide some of the toughest Metalcraft trucks to find, with
limited production. The Manistee Salt Truck has less than 10 known examples. The 'Red Bird Special'
also fits this style, but with different fonts. Less than 5 known examples.
Goodrich Prototype from the files of Al Korte, the designer.
Photo copyright Andrew Tolch Collection
Circa 1934. Never made, except for a partial prototype.
Two variations exsist of the PLEE-ZING Tow truck;
a short visor and a long visor version.
A rare and desirable Heinz variation, the fore-runner to the
more elaborate Heinz Pickle Truck with rubber tires.
Early Pleezing Tow truck, circa 1931-1932.
Rare blank side truck, probably sold at local dime stores and hardware
stores when an ad contract fell-through. Although all variations without advertising on them are rare,
a few other color combos have popped up most using the color orange.
A hard to find TAG SOAP Steam shovel. There is also a Forbes Coffee and a CW Coffee Steam shovel.
A rare truck, in a series that came out for Christmas 1931, in the Philadelphia area only. The wheels on the trucks from this series were painted.
As far as we know this is the only two-toned cab truck that Metalcraft made.
Text and photos, unless stated otherwise, are the property and copyright of Andrew Tolch LLC.
Request permission before using text and images for public consumption.
Some possible variations that we have no photos of:
Buster Brown Art Deco Truck(?), Private Label Pure Oil Airplanes, Moll's Grocery Truck and a Red Diamond Coffee....the search continues....
Highest price paid for a Gold Bond Coffee, a WeatherBird Shoes, White's Bread (STL) or a Hardy's Salt Art deco truck!