Vintage Toy Show Visits Biloxi - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Vintage Toy Show Visits Biloxi

They're looking for vintage Barbie dolls, classic Lionel train sets and old cans of Tinker Toys.

The International Toy Collectors Association is in Biloxi this weekend. And the group is buying old toys. Childhood playthings, hidden away in attics, could bring big bucks.

Billy McCurley is just at big kid at 26 years old.  He travels from city to city inspecting old toys.

"We're the International Toy Collectors Association. We travel all over the country and we search for antique toys that our collectors had from their childhood."

Old toys are big business. The kids who played with the first Barbie dolls and Dick Tracy games are now trying to re capture the happy times of years long gone.

"The hot thing right now is the baby boomers. They're looking for their toys to bring back their childhood memories. I would say right now 80 percent of the collectors we represent is baby boomers. And they say they have the money," McCurley said.

Joseph Littlepage brought in a wooden train set that was handed down from his father. He came looking for information about the antique.

"It was handed down," Littlepage said. "My father was a collector and I inherited it from him and kept it all these years too. So, I'm mainly interested in finding out what it is, how old it is and maybe what it's worth too."

Old toys in the original box are worth the most. Packaging is a definite plus.

"What we look for is the stuff still in the original packaging. The packaging is 80 percent of the value of any toy," said McCurley.

Wanda Lee Corley brought her Christmas present from 60 years ago.

"The little boy doll has disappeared, but the little girl is still here."

Her "Playschool Pullman" features a doll in a train car with a fold down bed and working shutters.

She hopes to pass it down to her grandchildren.

"It is. This is mine. This is mine. It takes me back to being a little girl."

And taking folks back to their childhood is the main thing that drives the toy collecting hobby.

by Steve Phillips

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