Friday, May 24, 2024

“The Town of Iron Toys”


Classic Mechanical Banks on Display

Sunday, November 14th at 2 p.m.
Stratford Library Lovell Room

by Tom Holehan
Public Relations & Programming

The Stratford Library will present a special holiday talk about the classic mechanical banks by J. & E. Stevens Company of Cromwell, Connecticut with, The Town of Iron Toys” on Sunday, November 14th at 2 pm.  The talk, presented by historian Richard Franklin Donohue, is free and open to the public and will take place live in the Library’s Lovell Room.

The mechanical banks of the J. & E. Stevens Company were extremely popular in America between the Civil War and World War II.  People of all ages enjoyed the spring-loaded action that resulted from depositing a coin into these iron amusements.  The Town of Iron Toys program includes a PowerPoint presentation about the history of mechanical banks and a demonstration of the original banks.

Guest speaker Richard Franklin Donohue is a singer, private music instructor and historian.  Donohue is the Town Historian of Cromwell.   His original research has formed the basis of museum exhibits, traveling lectures and living history programs on topics ranging from 18th century Privateers to the Women’s suffrage movement.  He has been President and Program Director of the Cromwell Historical Society for nearly fifteen years and a teacher in both public and private schools for twenty-five.  He is the author of “Rosetown Review,” a monthly history article published in the Cromwell Life newspaper. As a historical lecturer, he has presented programs throughout the state of Connecticut.

The Town of Iron Toys will begin at 2 p.m. on November 14th in the Stratford Library Lovell Room.  Patrons are required to wear a mask inside the Library and seating will be limited.  To reserve a seat, call the Library at: 203.385.4162.


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