Ernst Plank Toy Steam Engine

Ernst Plank Toy Steam Engine

Usage conditions apply
Description (Brief)
This toy steam engine was manufactured by the Ernst Plank Company of Nuremburg, Germany during the early 20th century. There is a small metal plate on the toy’s wooden base that reads “Rapid,” possibly the model name of this engine. The toy has a pressed metal firebox below the boiler, which has a steam whistle. The boiler powers a vertical slide valve engine shafted to a flywheel, with an ornamental flyball governor on the shaft.
Ernst Plank founded his company in Nuremburg, Germany in 1866. The company was well known for manufacturing a variety of metal toys like steam locomotives, stationary steam engines, early photography equipment, and magic lanterns until its dissolution in 1935.
Currently not on view
Object Name
toy, steam engine and boiler
steam engine and boiler, toy
place made
Physical Description
white metal (overall material)
tin (stack material)
wood (base material)
flywheel: 1 3/4 in; x 4.445 cm
boiler: 3 1/4 in x 1 3/4 in; x 8.255 cm x 4.445 cm
base: 6 in x 5 1/2 in; x 15.24 cm x 13.97 cm
overall: 9 3/4 in; 24.765 cm
overall: 9 3/4 in x 5 1/2 in x 5 3/4 in; 24.765 cm x 13.97 cm x 14.605 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Bequest of the Estate of Greville I. Bathe
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Work and Industry: Mechanical and Civil Engineering
Engineering Steam Toys and Models
Engineering, Building, and Architecture
Family & Social Life
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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