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A True Listing of
Authentic American Factory-Made Mechanical Banks
by F.H. Griffith - HOBBIES Magazine - September, 1953

This is a true listing of authentic American factory-made mechanical or animated banks. Registering banks, as such, are not included in this listing as they are in a class by themselves. There are, however, four borderline banks included in the listing and they are the Pump and Bucket, Registering Dime Savings Bank, Safety Locomotive, and the Perfection Registering. The Pump and Bucket is a borderline case due to its pump handle operation. In the case of the Registering Dime Savings Bank the coin causes the clock hands to move automatically and register the amount, this action being similar to the National Savings Bank, The Safety Locomotive with its automatic removable stack is another borderline bank and it’s questionable if it should be considered mechanical even though the writer has listed it. The same can be said for the Perfection Registering Bank with the figure of a girl pointing to the amount as deposited.

The foreign banks are listed separately as they do not have the value or desirability of American banks. Then comes the listing showing patterns, which, while they are mechanical banks, don’t belong in with a listing of the group which were actually sold in stores to the public. The likelihood is that the pattern banks listed were never put on the market. There is a possibility in the case of the Called Out Bank that a few were made in cast iron, however, these could be recasts from original patterns.

The next group is titled "Uncertain" and this is just what it implies. The recast banks are next shown and then all the known fakes up to now are enumerated. Of course recast banks are fakes and have no value in a collection. They are listed separately from the fakes to help the collector. Recast banks are easily recognized provided the person has some amount of experience and knowledge of banks. However, some banks that are out and out fakes made to fool collectors are more difficult to recognize due to the fact they have been made from patterns. These fakes are accurately listed and have no value in a collection unless the collector wishes to fool himself.

Undoubtedly there will be those who will notice that banks such as Independence Hall, Globe, Lighthouse, Dog I Hear A Call, Pay Phone, and others just like them have been omitted. These are not mechanical or animated banks and are usually listed and collected only to make a collection or list seem larger. They could possibly be in a so-called semi-mechanical class, but they more properly fit in with the large and endless group of still banks. This is not mean to imply that they don’t have any value, only the fact they are not mechanical or animated banks. After all, among the most mechanical of all the banks are those that register the amount when a coin is deposited. However, these registering banks, as such, don’t belong in the accepted grouping of the mechanical banks.

This list has no duplications of banks and varieties are not listed. As an example of a variety, there are several kinds of Tammany Banks; some with no name, some with Hall’s Patent on one side of the chair, and others with Tammany Bank on both sides of the chair. These are all the same bank with the same figure and the same operation. Therefore, only one Tammany Bank is listed.

Nos. 56 and 57, the Gray Elephants, are banks not usually classified as mechanical, but they definitely are as their trunks move when the coin is inserted.

Nos. 60, 106, and 170 are banks that were made until about 1942. Manufacture of these was stopped because of the war. It is understood that the Hubley Manufacturing Company who made the banks are not going to manufacture them again. There are older models of the Elephant Howdah (Pull Tail) and Trick Dog (Solid Base). The older Elephants were painted gray instead of white and the Trick Dog in the older model has a six-part base as listed, No. 169.

The two Owl Banks, Nos. 125 and 126, operate differently and the same applies to Nos. 174 and 175, the Uncle Tom Banks.

Nos. 143 and 144, the Standing Rabbits, are listed individually as one is much larger than the other and the bases are different.

In the case of the Uncle Sam Bust, the writer has never seen a specimen which he considers to be original or authentic. Therefore, it is listed twice, under "Uncertain" and under "Recasts," but is not in the authentic group.

All Banks are cast iron unless otherwise noted.

  1. Administration Building (Columbia Magic Savings Bank)
  2. Afghanistan Bank
  3. Always Did ‘Spise A Mule
  4. Always Did ‘Spise A Mule (Jockey)
  5. American Bank (Sewing Machine)
  6. Artillery Bank
  7. Atlas Bank
  8. Bad Accident
  9. Bank Of Education And Economy
  10.   Bank Teller Bank (Tall Teller Behind Three-Sided Grill Labeled "Bank")
  11.   Bear And Tree Stump
  12.   Bear Standing (Slot In Chest)
  13.   Bill E. Grin
  14.   Billy Goat Bank
  15.   Bird On Roof
  16.   Bismark Bank
  17.   Bow-ery Bank (Cast Iron Building, Wood Mechanism)
  18.   Bowling Alley Bank
  19.   Boy And Bull Dog
  20.   Boy On Trapeze (French’s Automatic Bank)
  21.   Boy Scout Camp
  22.   Bread Winners Bank
  23.   Bucking Mule (Miniature)
  24.   Butting Buffalo
  25.   Butting Goat (Tree Stump)
  26.   Butting Ram (Man Thumbs Nose)
  27.   Bull Dog Bank (Coin On Nose)
  28.   Bull Dog Savings Bank
  29.   Bull Dog Standing (Coin On Tongue)
  30.   Calamity Bank
  31.   Camera Bank (Picture Pops Up)
  32.   Cat And Mouse Bank (Clock-like Cat Face)
  33.   Chief Big Moon (Indian Camp)
  34.   Chimpanzee Bank
  35.   Circus Bank
  36.   Circus Ticket Collector (Man And Barrel)
  37.   Clown Harlequin and Columbine
  38.   Clown On Bar (Tin Figure)
  39.   Clown On Globe
  40.   Colored Boys Stealing Watermelon
  41.   Confectionery Bank
  42.   Creedmore Bank
  43.   Cross-Legged Minstrel (Tin-Tips Hat)
  44.   Cupola Bank (Circular Building, Man In Cupola)
  45.   Dapper Dan
  46.   Darky And Watermelon
  47.   Darky In Cabin (Cabin Bank)
  48.   Darktown Battery (Baseball Bank)
  49.   Dentist Bank
  50.   Ding Dong Bell (Tin – Wind Up)
  51.   Dog On Turntable
  52.   Dog Tray Bank
  53.   Eagle and Eaglets
  54.   Elephant (Baby, Opens At X O’Clock. Lead or Pewter.)
  55.   Elephant (Black With Three Stars)
  56.   Elephant (Gray – Moves Trunk – Large)
  57.   Elephant (Gray – Moves Trunk – Small)
  58.   Elephant Howdah (Locked)
  59.   Elephant Howdah (Man Pops Out)
  60.   Elephant Howdah (Pull Tail)
  61.   Elephant (Three Clowns on Tub)
  62.   Fortune Teller Bank (Safe)
  63.   Freedman’s Bank (Wood, Metal and Cloth)
  64.   Frog On Arched Track (Tin)
  65.   Frog On Rock
  66.   Frog On Round Base
  67.   Frogs (Two – Kicks Coin In Other’s Mouth)
  68.   Gem Bank
  69.   Germania Exchange Bank
  70.   Giant Bank
  71.   Girl In Victorian Chair
  72.   Girl Skipping Rope (Jumping Rope Bank)
  73.   Goat, Frog and Old Man (Initiating Bank, Second Degree)
  74.   Guessing Bank
  75.   Halls Excelsior
  76.   Halls Lilliput
  77.   Hen And Chick
  78.   Hindu (Bust With Turban)
  79.   Hold The Fort
  80.   Home Bank
  81.   Home Bank (Tin)
  82.   Horse Race
  83.   Humpty Dumpty
  84.   Indian And Bear (Bear Hunt)
  85.   Initiating Bank First Degree
  86.   Jolly Nigger
  87.   Jonah And The Whale
  88.   Jonah And The Whale (Jonah Emerges From Whale’s Mouth)
  89.   Jumbo (Baby Elephant On Wheels. Moves Head.)
  90.   Kick Inn Bank (Wood and Tin)
  91.   Leap Frog Bank
  92.   Lion Hunter
  93.   Lion And Two Monkeys
  94.   Little Jocko Musical Bank (Tin)
  95.   Magic Bank
  96.   Magician Bank
  97.   Mammy and Child (Baby Mine)
  98.   Mason Bank
  99.   Memorial Money Bank
  100.    Merry-Go-Round
  101.    Mikado Bank
  102.    Milking Cow
  103.    Mamma Katzenjammer
  104.    Monkey (Drops Coin In Stomach)
  105.    Monkey and Coconut
  106.    Monkey Bank
  107.    Moody And Sankey
  108.    Mosque
  109.    Motor Bank (Trolly Car Bank)
  110.    Mule Entering Barn (Dog Comes Out)
  111.    National Bank
  112.    National Savings Bank (Tells Fortune)
  113.    New Bank
  114.    New Creedmore Bank
  115.    North Pole Bank
  116.    Novelty Bank
  117.    Octagonal Fort Bank
  118.    Old Woman In The Shoe
  119.    Organ Bank (Boy And Girl)
  120.    Organ Bank (Cat and Dog)
  121.    Organ Bank (Monkey)
  122.    Organ Bank (Miniature)
  123.    Organ Grinder and Performing Bear
  124.    Owl (Turns Head)
  125.    Owl (Slot in Book)
  126.    Owl (Slot in Head)
  127.    Paddy And The Pig (Shamrock Bank)
  128.    Panorama Bank
  129.    Patronize The Blind Man And His Dog
  130.    Peg-Leg Beggar
  131.    Pelican (Man in Bill)
  132.    Perfection Registering Bank
  133.    Picture Gallery
  134.    Pig In High Chair
  135.    Pistol Bank
  136.    Preacher In The Pulpit
  137.    Presto Bank (Small Building)
  138.    Presto Savings Bank (Wood and Metal. Mouse on Roof.)
  139.    Professor Pug Frog And His Great Bicycle Feat
  140.    Pump And Bucket
  141.    Punch And Judy
  142.    Rabbit In Cabbage
  143.    Rabbit (Standing Large)
  144.    Rabbit (Standing Small)
  145.    Reclining Chinaman
  146.    Red Riding Hood
  147.    Registering Dime Savings Bank (Mechanical Clock)
  148.    Rival Bank
  149.    Roller Skating Bank
  150.    Rooster Crowing
  151.    Safety Locomotive
  152.    Santa Claus
  153.    Schley Bottling Up Cervera Bank
  154.    Shoot The Chute Bank
  155.    Snap It Bank (Small Eight-Sided Building)
  156.    Speaking Dog
  157.    Sportsman Bank (Fowler Shoots Bird)
  158.    Springing Cat (Cat And Mouse. Lead or Pewter.)
  159.    Squirrel And Tree Stump
  160.    Stump Speaker
  161.    Tabby Bank
  162.    Tammany Bank
  163.    Target Bank (Fort and Cannon)
  164.    Teddy And The Bear
  165.    Toad In Den (Tin)
  166.    Toad On Stump
  167.    Trapeze Bank (Two Men)
  168.    Tree Bank (Boy Robbing Bird’s Nest)
  169.    Trick Dog (Six Part Base)
  170.    Trick Dog (Solid Base)
  171.    Turtle Bank
  172.    Uncle Remus
  173.    Uncle Sam
  174.    Uncle Tom
  175.    Uncle Tom (No Lapels)
  176.    U.S. Bank
  177.    U.S. and Spain Bank
  178.    Watch Dog Safe
  179.    Weeden’s Plantation (Tin. Wind Up.)
  180.    William Tell
  181.    Winner Savings Bank (Tin)
  182.    Wireless Bank (Tin)
  183.    World’s Fair Bank (Columbus and Indian)
  184.    Zoo Bank

 

FOREIGN BANKS — English and German:

  1. British Lion (Tin)
  2. Dinah
  3. Elephant (Tin. Swallows Coin When Tail Is Pressed)
  4. Football Bank
  5. Frog And Snake (Tin)
  6. Hoopla Bank
  7. John Bull Bank
  8. Jolly Nigger (Butterfly Tie)
  9. Jolly Nigger (High Hat)
  10. Little High Hat
  11. Little Joe
  12. Little Moe
  13. Minstrel (Tin)
  14. Monkey And Parrot (Tin)
  15. Monkey With Tray (Tin)
  16. Scotchman (Tin)
  17. Signal Cabin (Tin)
  18. Stollwerck Vending (Tin)
  19. Thrifty Tom (Tin)
  20. Wimbledon Bank

 

PATTERNS — Made of lead, bronze or brass:

  1. Aunt Dina And The Fairy
  2. Blacksmith
  3. Called Out Bank
  4. Halls Yankee Notion Bank
  5. Help The Blind
  6. Moon Face
  7. Twin Bank
  8. Wishbone Bank

 

UNCERTAIN — Not sure they are true banks or if authentic:

  1. Alligator In Tin Trough
  2. Baby Elephant Bank
  3. Bull Tosses Boy In Well (Brass)
  4. Chinaman In Boat Rat On Tray (Lead or Pewter)
  5. Jack On Roof
  6. Sambo
  7. Safe (Top Springs Open)
  8. Shoot That Hat
  9. Tank Bank
  10. Uncle Sam Bust
  11. Woodpecker (Tin)

 

RECASTS — Banks that have been cast by using original specimens as patterns:

  1. Bear And Tree Stump
  2. Bear Standing (Slot in Chest)
  3. Bill E. Grin
  4. Bird On Roof
  5. Bismark
  6. Boy And Bull Dog
  7. Bucking Goat
  8. Bucking Mule With Rider
  9. Bull Dog Standing
  10. Elephant Locked Howdah
  11. Gem Bank
  12. Jolly Nigger (All Types)
  13. Jonah And The Whale
  14. Tabby Bank
  15. Uncle Sam Bust

 

FAKES:

  1. Banks that have been completely made to fool collectors.
  2. Examples: Long May It Wave and Carnival.

  3. Toys that have been altered and made into banks.
  4. Example: Elephant On Wheels (Moves Trunk).

  5. Toy parts or bank parts that have been assembled to make a mechanical bank.
  6. Examples: Ferris Wheel and Cat Chasing Mouse In Building.

  7. Still banks altered to make them mechanical.

Examples: Bull With Movable Horns, Lost Dog, and Barrel With Movable Arms.

  1. Barrel With Movable Arms
  2. Bucking Goat With Rider
  3. Bull And Bear (Cast Iron and Brass)
  4. Bull With Movable Horns
  5. Captain Kidd
  6. Cat Chasing Mouse In Building
  7. Clock With Pendulum
  8. Elephant On Wheels (Moves Trunk)
  9. Feed The Kitty
  10. Ferris Wheel
  11. Forty-Niner
  12. Glutton
  13. Jolly Nigger (Straw Hat)
  14. Long May It Wave
  15. Lost Dog
  16. Metropolitan Bank
  17. Presto Savings Bank (All fakes have metal building. This should be wood and metal.)
  18. Squirrel (Lead)
  19. Target Bank (Building)
  20. Trick Donkey
  21. Tricky Pig
  22. Tricky Pig (Risque)
 

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