Toys

Centennial presidential game
As America celebrated its centennial in 1876, companies created games, like the one shown from the McLoughlin Brothers, to encourage children to learn the history of the presidency.

Commemorating the presidency through toys and games is a tradition as old as the nation.

Lincoln Logs
One of the most successful toys associated with the presidency is Lincoln Logs, which lets children build log cabins that look the way the public imagined the early home of Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln Logs was invented in 1916 by John Lloyd Wright, son of architect Frank Lloyd Wright.
Lincoln Logs lent by William L. Bird Jr.
Nixon and Mao Ping-Pong paddles
In the early 1970s, President Richard Nixon slowly moved toward opening full diplomatic relations with Mao Tse-tung's People's Republic of China. He arranged a series of table-tennis matches, known as "Ping-Pong diplomacy," between American and Chinese players. Eventually Nixon traveled to China. These souvenir paddles, with images of Nixon and Mao, reflect the importance and visibility of the matches.
This early teddy bear was made by the Ideal Toy Company. The idea for the teddy bear came from a 1902 newspaper cartoon by Clifford Berryman. It showed President Theodore Roosevelt, a noted hunter and outdoorsman, refusing to shoot a captured bear cub. The story helped cement Roosevelt's image as a masculine but compassionate leader.
Johnson dart game
Not all toys and dolls are humorous or benign. Souvenirs can provide an opportunity to criticize the president or his policies. This dart game from 1967 reflects opposition to Lyndon Johnson's decision to escalate the war in Vietnam.
Presidential pencil case and Clinton mask
Unfortunately, the image of the president does not ensure the quality or propriety of a souvenir as these objects attest. The plastic case contains one pencil for each president. The Halloween mask of Bill Clinton is from 1992.