Monday, August 31, 2015


Looks like the next several weeks are going to be a little crazy for me; what it means here is that you’ll be seeing a lot of short and sweet posts here in the interim. (Nothing traumatic or life-threatening, just work-related and time-sensitive.)

First up is this Bentley Sales Company ad from early 1978, scanned from the pages of the short-lived but influential hobby magazine The International Model Horse Journal.

As I’ve elaborated on before, the Black Angus Calf was one of the earliest of the direct-to-collectors Special Runs, debuting at the 1977 Model Horse Congress. The hobby was much smaller then, so even though the subscription base for the IMHJ was only around 200 people, that still represented a significant chunk of the hobby community.

It’s kind of mindblowing to think that a low piece run Special Run Calf could still be available nearly a half year after it was offered. Yep, things were definitely different back then! (Not always better...)

The International Model Horse Journal was an early attempt at creating an offset-printed (i.e. “professional-looking”) hobby periodical. Almost all hobby publications prior – and for several years after – were printed via ditto or mimeograph machine. The results weren’t always pretty, but those printing methods were cheap and accessible. They got the job done.

The IMHJ had already been cancelled before I made my formal entrée into the hobby in the latter half of 1978, so its influence on me was largely indirect. I think I have an almost complete archive of them now, but the numbering system was a little off, so it’s hard to tell.

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