What Toys Did the Victorians Have?

Some of the toys available to Victorian children were train sets, rocking horses, tea sets, toy soldiers and doll houses, according to BBC. These and other manufactured toys were primarily available to the children of rich and upper middle class families.

During the latter part of the 19th century, factory-made toys began to gain popularity among children of all demographics. Rich and upper middle class children had a much bigger selection to choose from, and these toys were often crafted with expensive materials. Wax dolls with porcelain faces were all the rage among young Victorian girls, and the elaborate train sets beloved by boys of that era were often intricately carved and featured great detail. Virtually all early rocking horses had real horsehair for manes and tails.

Factory-made toys were available for poor children as well, but these were small toys typically made from tin that could be purchased for about a penny. These often found their way into Christmas stockings as a treat when the parents could afford it. Most poor children played with homemade or improvised toys. Rag dolls were popular among Victorian girls in poor households, because they could be made from material scraps. Dolls were also made using clothes pins as a base. Other popular toys among poor children were tops and jacks, paper windmills and toy boats carved from wood. Even a piece of rope could be used as a toy in those days.