Mr. Potato Head, An Iconic American Toy


There is something about nostalgic toys that will put a smile on anyone’s face and one of our favorites is the one and only, Mr. Potato Head. Conceived by George Lerner in 1949, the original was produced and manufactured by Hasbro in 1952 as separate plastic parts with pushpins that could be stuck into a real potato or other vegetable. Due to complaints of rotting vegetables, Hasbro began producing a plastic potato body that was included in the initial “funny face” toy set in 1964.


The original Mr. Potato Head Funny Face Kit

Source: GoGo Squeeze

Mr. Potato Head was the first toy to be advertised on television in April of 1952 and was the first commercial targeted towards children. The official birth date of Mr. Potato Head was May 1, 1952 and the original version cost $0.98. Included with the Mr. Potato Head kit were hands, feet, ears, two mouths, two pairs of eyes, four noses, three hats, eyeglasses, a pipe, and eight felt pieces resembling facial hair. The original kit did not come with a plastic potato “body”, so parents had to provide their children with an actual potato into which children could stick the various facial parts. Soon after a plastic potato with inserts for the parts was included in the package and to this day remains in production. While he has gone through a few changes over the years, he still maintains much of his original appearance.

mr potato head

Mr. Potato Head circa 1975

Source: Mears Pop Culture Auctions

Mr. Potato Head has enjoyed his share of fame as he has appeared on television and in films such as Toy Story series. He has also been released in various themes like the Star Wars inspired “Darth Tater” and Indiana Jones inspired “Taters of the Lost Ark.” Oh, and not to be forgotten is his companion, Mrs. Potato Head.

We love this little guy so much that we want to give one away to a lucky reader. To enter, simply follow the instructions below and a winner will be selected at noon on February 14th. Who says you can’t play with food? 😉

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