Sandy Lechtick has built one of the most stunning Penny Arcade collections in the Nation. With his interest in 1920’s-1950’s coin-operated machines, he has assembled an unusual and extremely eclectic collection of rare Fortune Tellers such as the Cleveland Grandma, Roovers Puss n Boots, Donkey and Madam Zita; shooting galleries, early popcorn and peanut machines, games of skill and strength, boxing and chin-up machines, Clam Shell Mutoscopes and 1940’s electro-mechanical World War II games.
His interests have grown in mechanical advertising window displays, automatons and Baranger Motions. His collection includes 1900's Page Turners, Page Lifters, automated clowns, musicians and magicians. He recently acquired a most unusual 1920’s “Bell Boy” which one might find in a 1930’s Theatre.
The third leg of the collection is mechanical automatic music devices which include a Mills Panoram, Ramey Banjo Orchestra, Mills Violano Virtuoso, player pianos, Scopitones and jukeboxes.
Vintage amusement park banners and unusual advertising add to the overall look, sense of excitement and energy!
Automatons have been popular for centuries with examples of simple devices dating as far back as 100BC. During the middle ages, automatons became more life-like, started aquiring human qualities and were used extensively by alchemists, magicians and psychics to illustrate their power.
Coin-operated machines, toys, and games (also known as coin-op or just coin op) range from cash registers and pinball machines to piggy banks and jukeboxes.
Perhaps the most easily recognizable advertising medium of the late 19th and early 20th centuries is the porcelain sign. Starting in the 1880s, companies saw the advantages of porcelain as a material that was both durable and weather resistant.
Baranger Motion machines or "Baranger Motions" were store-window mechanical animated advertising displays, rented to jewellers, and produced from 1925 to 1959 by the Baranger Company of South Pasadena, California USA.