John Deere Toy Tractors Gifts That Last A Life Time

John Deere Toy Tractors--gifts That Last A Life Time

By: - Toys - July 5, 2011
john deere toy tractors gifts that last a life time

John Deere Toy Tractors are only one style of John Deere toys that are made to last through children’s curiosities, whims and activities. The manufactures of John Deere Toys and John Deere Toy Tractors have, from the beginning, sought to create a toy every child will enjoy; a toy that will grow with every child.

The beginning of the John Deere Toy Tractor stems from the remarkable history of the John Deere Company.  The founder, whose name was John Deere, was born in Rutland, Vermont in 1804 and learned to be a blacksmith. Bearing interest in problems with plows, he created the first steel moldboard plow in 1837.  It was custom, then, for a blacksmith to create tools for farms as they were ordered.  Mr. Deere was the first to make a number of plows and then take them to individual farms to sell.  By 1868 Mr. Deere’s business was incorporated into Deere and Company.  In 1918 the company purchased the Waterloo Engine Company of Waterloo, Iowa and began to manufacture tractors.  From that time through today John Deere has become worldwide in its manufacture of farm equipment from tractors to combines and everything in between.  Around 1918 that manufacturing began to include smaller replicas we know today as John Deere Toy Tractors and John Deere Toys.

Every civilization on earth has made miniature replicas of adult tools from earthenware to wheeled toys to play weapons and miniature animals. While John Deere Toy Tractors were first made in 1918, during and after World War II tin and iron were restricted.  After WWII the demand for metal toys increased because of their scarcity.  In 1945 an unemployed metal worker named Fred Ertl, Sr. cast his first toy tractor replica in his basement in Dubuque Iowa.  In 1946 he created his first John Deer Toy Tractor replica with aluminum wheels.  Later he began making the wheels of rubber.

The first marketing strategy to sell the John Deere Toys through John Deere dealerships was created between Fred Ertl, Sr. and the Eska Company.  After Deere and Company provided the licensing rights, marketing the John Deere Toys was a success for all three companies.  The first Ertl Toy Company was built in Dyersville, Iowa in 1959 and over time became the largest manufacturer of die cast farm toys. By 1986 the Ertl factory in Dyersville was named the National Farm Toy Museum.

Over time, die cast replicas of farm implements have become collectors’ paradise.  The top sellers are John Deere, Case IH, Ford New-Holland and Agco. There is always a new line─ such as Ertl’s recently released Precision Series which are the epitome of detail including rubber tires, levers and steering that works.  What is remarkable, however, is that many of these die cast toys are not new but handed from one generation to the next.  Any personal collection is sure to own one or two of those ‘tricycle’ John Deere Tractor Toy replicas, (the good old Johnie Popper) and old moldboard plows or pull-type combines.

Beyond the die cast John Deere Toys, John Deere is also known for its Ride-On Toys created with moving levers, spring loaded pedals and working hitches to make the little farmer ‘work just like Daddy’.   These include bicycles, tricycles, wagons, pedal tractors.  There is even a John Deer Radio Controlled Toy Gator.

Tractors are not the only toy replicas. There are an array of toy farm implements from plows and discs to wagons and hay bines.  Barns with fencing, grain bins and farm animals are also available.  John Deere holds a new line of books, lawn tools and tractors or other rides just for ‘John Deere Kids’.


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