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The Most Popular Toy the Year You Were Born

Ready for a trip down memory lane? From Etch a Sketch to Big Wheels to Power Rangers, enjoy this blast from your toy past.

Etch a SketchKen McKay/Shutterstock

1960 - Etch A Sketch

French electrician André Cassagnes had the idea of a "drawing toy with a joy stick, glass screen, and aluminum powder," according to Using that concept as a catalyst, The Ohio Art Co. launched the Magic Screen in 1960, which was a whole new way to draw without pencil and paper—and you could erase with a shake of your hands. Of course, we now know it as the Etch A Sketch you can still get today.

Bored surfers having fun on a Slip n SlideBrendan Beirne/Shutterstock

1961 - Slip 'n Slide

Back in the day, this was the closest you were getting to having a water park in your very own backyard. Thanks to toy company Wham-O, all you had to do was hook up the old garden hose to this long plastic sheet and voila! You could slide down the Slip 'n Slide into a small wading pool. 


1962 - SuperBall

What happens when you accidentally create a plastic ball that bounces? Wham-O buys your idea and it ends up selling millions. That's exactly what happened to Norman Stingley, a chemical engineer who came upon the compound polymer zectron. At one time, Wham-O had to produce over 170,000 balls a day to keep up with the demand. Fun fact: According to Wham-O, the NFL named the Super Bowl game after this bouncing ball.

Hasbro's newest version of their famous "Easy Bake Oven" in Pawtucket, R.I. Hasbro says it will soon reveal a gender-neutral Easy-Bake Oven after meeting with a New Jersey girl who started a campaign calling on the toy maker to make one that appeals to all kidsStephan Savoia/Shutterstock

1963 - Easy Bake Oven

According to Good Housekeeping, the original bright teal Easy-Bake Oven had a tiny stove that was heated by an incandescent light bulb that could reach a temp of 350 degrees. In 2013, a 13-year-old girl persuaded the company to create the oven in a more masculine color for her little brother.

This photo shows a Gen. George Patton G.I. Joe action figure, right, and other G.I. Joes in a display at the New York State Military Museum in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. A half-century after the 12-inch doll was introduced at a New York City toy fair, the iconic action figure is being celebrated by collectors with a display at the military museum, while the toy's maker plans other anniversary events to be announced later this monthMike Groll/Shutterstock

1964 - G.I. Joe

Little plastic green army men were already a hit with the boy crowd when Hasbro broke record sales with the launch of G.I. Joe and his "21 movable parts," according to In fact, in only two years, G.I. Joe became more than half of Hasbro's sales. Although the original toy patent refers to the figure as a doll, Hasbro later prohibited calling G.I. Joe anything but an action figure. If you have any G.I. Joes still in the box, then you've got a hidden treasure in your house right now.

MILAN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 22: Operation board game at G! come giocare, trade fair dedicated to games, toys and children on NOVEMBER 22, 2013 in Milan.Tinxi/Shutterstock

1965 - Operation

An unsteady hand is your downfall in the game of Operation, which was invented by John Spinello, a student at the University of Illinois. He sold the game to Milton Bradley for $500. After a redesign, Milton Bradley released the game, and it went on to earn millions. Milton Bradley was eventually purchased by Hasbro in 1980, and they have since come to Spinello's aid. The New York Daily News reports that after word went viral that Spinello didn't have enough money to cover $25,000 oral surgery, Hasbro offered to buy Spinello's original game prototype.

Friends playing twisterElena Nichizhenova/Shutterstock

1966 - Twister

What began as an advertising promotion for shoe polish turned into a game that would span the decades. The original game was called Pretzel, but the name was unavailable and was changed to Twister. It was almost a flop as Sears Roebuck thought it was too racy for its catalog. But then it was played on The Tonight Show by none other than Johnny Carson himself and actress Eva Gabor. Their antics made the game an instant hit with the only store in Manhattan selling out the next day. In 1967, the game sold more than three million copies. It's also one of the classic board games everyone should own.

Battleship game - Stock ImageZmaj88/Shutterstock

1967 - Battleship

Milton Bradley may have launched the Battleship board game in 1967, but it existed as a pen and paper game way before that. The game may date back to Russian soldiers playing it in 1917. The phrase, "You sunk my battleship!" has certainly passed the test of time.

Hot Wheels showcases its top Track Builder sets at the New York Toy FairDiane Bondareff/Shutterstock

 1968 - Hot Wheels

It was a dark blue custom Camaro that first hit the shelves back in 1968. Mattel has since sold one billion cars. In 2012, a Beach Bomb model sold to a collector for $70,000. No, we're not kidding—here are even more childhood toys that are now worth thousands.

A handout photo made available by Sotheby's on 14 July 2017 showing a signed 'Snoopy' astronaut doll, which was the mascot of the Apollo 10 LM crew, with the original display box, to be auctioned on 20 july 2017 at Sotheby's in New York City, USA. The doll is expected to 2,000 to 3,000 US Dollars (about 1750 to 2600 euros).COURTESY SOTHEBY'S/HANDOUT/Shutterstock

1969 - Snoopy Astronaut

Who doesn't love Snoopy? After all, he's the somewhat human, lovable beagle of Peanuts fame. The United States went to the moon in 1969, and the Snoopy toy skyrocketed as well. The character became NASA's safety mascot for the Apollo program.

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