A Little Toy Bank That Scared Children

Image result for hand crank toy savings bank

When I was a little boy, there were all sorts of savings banks available to teach children how to save money. They came in all shapes and sizes: see the photo for one example of many.

My brother and I had cash register banks. The catch with those was, you couldn’t open them until you had $10 inside–wealth almost beyond my imagination. There was a little slot in the back, though, and if you shook the bank long enough, a nickel might find its way out.

Image result for images of uncle sam's 3-coin bank

My Aunt Louise (my father’s aunt, actually) had no children of her own, but she liked to keep nice things on hand for her many nieces and nephews. One of the toys she had for us was a “Ben Franklin Savings Bank” with a crank. You put a coin in, turned the crank, and it would say, “Thank you! A penny saved is a penny earned.”

Well, it did say that, but I think it was supposed to sound like a kindly old man. In fact, the voice coming out of the bank sounded like Gollum in the Lord of the Rings movies. Had I been just a little younger, it would’ve scared me but good.

Then we learned that if we turned the crank really, really fast, the voice would get all high and squeakity–like one of The Chipmunks. Richly amusing! That was what passed for a high-tech toy in those days, circa 1958–and boy, did we enjoy it.

One comment on “A Little Toy Bank That Scared Children”

  1. Oh, haha. that’s funny. When I was a kid, I just had to use a fruit jar
    with a slot cut in the lid. I never did manage to collect a lot of money,
    and actually, come to think of it, I was not really interested in saving money. Uncle Ed supplied all my candy and ice cream bars, Aunt Bessie
    brought me books and dresses, Uncle Oscar gave me stuff, so it didn’t seem as if I really needed much money.

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