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F.A.O Schwarz
New York, NY
1862 - Current

Aliases

 

FAO Schwarz (1862 - 1963)

Parents Magazine (1963 - 1970)

W.R Grace (1970 - 1974)

Franz Carl Weber (1974 - 1985)

Christiana Co. (1985)

Morse Partners Ltd (1986 - 1990)

NV Koninkiljke Bijenkorf Beheer aka Vendex (1990 - 2001)

Right Start Inc. (2001 - 2003)

D.E. Shaw & Co. (2004 - 2009)

Toys "R" Us, Inc. (2009 - Current)

 

Locations

 

New York, NY (+ 40 other locations)

 

History

 

faoSchwarz02.jpg   FAOSchwarz03.jpg   FAOSchwarz04.jpg

 

FAO Schwarz was founded in 1862 under the name "Toy Bazaar" by German immigrant Frederick August Otto Schwarz, in Baltimore, where he and his brothers retailed toys from a fancy-goods store. Additional locations of "Toy Bazaar" followed in Philadelphia and Boston.

 

In 1870, Schwarz opened a New York City location known as the "Schwarz Toy Bazaar" at 765 Broadway, which moved to 42 E. 14th Street in Union Square in 1880 and operated at that location until April 28, 1897, when it took over two vacant store locations at 39 and 41 W. 23rd Street. By then, The New York Times described Schwarz as "the largest dealer in toys in this city." [6]

 

 

 

Beginning in November 1869, the Schwarz Toy Bazaar held an exhibition of toys that would be available for the Christmas season, which in 1883 was described as the "14th Annual Exhibition." [7] In 1896, Schwarz proclaimed the store as the "Original Santa Claus Headquarters" in New York.[8] The FAO Schwarz holiday catalog has been published annually since 1876.[9][10]

 

In 1889, Schwarz added his initials to newspaper advertisements, branding the store at that time as simply "F.A.O. Schwarz," although the "Toy Bazaar" identifier continued until the move in 1897 to W. 23rd Street.[6]

 

In 1931, the New York City location moved to 745 Fifth Avenue where it operated for 55 years.

 

FAOSchwarz01.JPG

 

In 1963, when the Schwarz family sold their last shares in the business, FAO Schwarz went through a series of owners beginning with Parents Magazine. The company was subsequently sold to W.R. Grace in 1970, and then to toy retailer Franz Carl Weber of Zurich, Switzerland, in 1974. In 1985, Christiana Companies, a San Diego, California based company, owned FAO Schwarz for just one year. In 1986, Peter Harris, with the help of Philadelphian investment banker, Peter Morse, bought the company under Morse Partners Ltd. and moved the toy store across 58th Street to its current location in the General Motors Building at 767 Fifth Avenue at 58th Street. FAO Schwarz was sold to Netherlands-based NV Koninklijke Bijenkorf Beheer (later renamed Vendex/KBB) in 1990. Throughout the 1990s, new FAO Schwarz stores opened throughout the United States and by 2000 the company had 40 locations     

 

During their operations at some point they offered crayons under their own contracted in-house brand.

 

Known Crayon Boxes

 

Product Name

ID

Box

Colors

Crayons

Box Color

Design

Variation

Years

Rarity

Value

FAO Schwarz

FAO0002

ST

4

4

Red

Black band

Logo after FAO

1990s

6

$5

FAO Schwarz

FAO0003

UQ

130

130

Red

Half circle to circle

Blocks

1990s

8

$20

Fun at Art

FAO0001

HP

48

48

Clear, Yellow

Large Window

Label at center

1980s

6

$7

 

Photos

 

 

FAO Schwarz Fun at Art - 48 colors.jpg

 

Fao Schwarz - 4 colors.jpg

FAO0001

FAO0002

 

 

 

FAO0003