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Penny Pineapple Bank
by F.H. Griffith - HOBBIES Magazine - August, 1960

60-08.JPG (14384 bytes)The collector of mechanical banks, as well as the general public, will be interested in the news that we bring you at this time. This news has to do with a new mechanical bank that is not only attractive but also has the added desirable feature of being a historical item. Penny Pineapple is the bank, and she has put in her appearance to commemorate the occasion of the celebration of the addition of our 50th State, Hawaii, and the addition of the 50th Star to our Flag.

Penny Pineapple is similar in operation to a number of the bust type of mechanical banks such as Humpty Dumpty. When any coin up to and including a 50-cent piece is placed in her right hand she is ready for action. A lever located to the rear of the left shoulder is pressed and she raises her right hand to her mouth and swallows the coin. At the same time her tongue recedes and she rolls her eyes upward in appreciation. Releasing the lever returns the arm, tongue, and eyes to the position shown in the picture.

Credit for this decorative mechanical bank goes to Thomas M. Imswiler of West Chester, Penna., who thought up the idea more or less on the spur of the moment. He designed the bank and holds the patent rights. The original model was made by Charles E. Rabenstine of the Littlestown Pattern Works of Littlestown, Penna. Mr. Imswiler has formed a partnership with Alvin N. Saylor of York, Penna., and together they have formed the concern Imswiler & Saylor. They are producing the first 500 of the Penny Pineapple Banks with the designation "1st Run Of 500" imprinted on the base plate. In addition to this the date of July 4, 1960 is imprinted across the back of the initial 500 banks. Any subsequent banks produced will not bear either of these designations. Among other plans Imswiler & Saylor intend to have one of the banks presented to Governor William F. Quinn of Hawaii during the period of the celebration of Hawaii becoming our 50th State and the 50th Star on the Flag.

Penny Pineapple is a well made cast iron mechanical bank and the molding and foundry work is being done by a concern who formerly made some still banks and have some experience in the field. The bank is painted in very attractive bright colors. The face is a tan color with some red highlighting on the cheeks, the eyebrows are outlined in black, and she has blue eyes. Her lips and tongue are bright red and the teeth are white. The back of her head has the texture and appearance of a pineapple and the leaves atop her head are green. On the front of her chest is a large yellow five-pointed star and this star has ‘50th’ in black raised letters thereon. She has a blue collar and blue sleeves and the striping across the front and back of her blouse is in red and white. Across the back is inscribed the name "Penny Pineapple" in raised letters.

The bank is priced at $15.50 plus postage and anyone desiring one of them can contact the writer should they so choose.

In closing the writer might explain that in the ordinary routine surrounding the collecting of mechanical banks he would have no particular interest in writing about any banks that are of current manufacture. However, Penny Pineapple does have historical significance and in time will in all probability become a collector’s item and thus he feels that it is important enough to bring to the attention of HOBBIES’ readers.


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