Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Candlelight Tour: Mangold Stick Horse Factory

Back on December 3, we served as docents for the Hood County Courthouse on Granbury's annual Candlelight Tour of Homes (and other historic structures).  One of the benefits of our two-hour shift was a free ticket to see other sites on the tour, which I will continue to feature this week.

One of the homes on the tour is a business today - and also was in the past.  The original four-room house was completed in 1916.  Today it is the home of Town and Country Floral Gallery.

What was especially interesting to me, though, is that this was also the former home of the Mangold Toy Company's stick horse factory.  R. P. and Mattie Landers Mangold moved into the house in 1937.  Making the stick horses began as a hobby for Mattie, but grew into a business during the 1940s.  At its peak (the company was the #1 toy manufacturer in Texas in the early 1950s), the company shipped over 600,000 stick horses a year throughout North and South America as well as Australia, and employed about 60 people.

In 1960 Humble Oil, forerunner of Exxon, did a short television clip on the factory and how the horses were made. Local kids were in the video, and you can see this house in it as well.  They were showing it on continuous loop during the Candlelight Tour, but the five-minute video is also available on YouTube:

© Amanda Pape - 2011 - click here to e-mail me.

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