Toys were important items because Ransom and Sarah Williams had a total of nine children while they lived on the farm. Their children were born over a period of 16 years, from 1876 to 1892, so young children were always present on the farm for more than two decades. This image shows a variety of toys that were found: (a) a cap gun with the word “CHIEF” on one side;  (b) marbles made of clay and glass; (c)  a hard rubber ball; (d) ceramic doll fragments; and (e-f) ceramic fragments from different vessels in a child’s tea set. Generally speaking, cap guns, marbles, and rubber balls tended to be boy’s toys while dolls and tea sets were girl’s toys. But historical evidence and oral history interviews reveal that there was always a great deal of overlap in the use of toys by young children.

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