Aesop's Fables > Aesop's Artifacts > Toys & Games > Picture Puzzles

Picture Puzzles

1931 Aesop's Fables Picture Puzzle. Three puzzles. Apparently by J. Lang. Heavy cardboard. 5½" x 8½". Series No. 205. Utica: Madmar Quality Co. $25 from Robert Watts, Fairfield, VA, through Ebay, March, '00.

Three twelve-piece puzzles: GGE, "The Squealing Pig," and TH. The style of the pictures reminds me of Milo Winter's work. The puzzles are complete but slightly warped. What a great find!

Click on any of the three to see its image enlarged.

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1946? Walt Disney Character Jaymar Heavy Board Jigsaw Puzzle for Tiny Tots. TH. "Large Pieces Little Fingers Can Handle." NY: Jaymar. $9.99 from Mary Duque, Cashmere, WA, through Ebay, August, '01.

The scene is the finish line, with the tortoise stretching out his head—in fact past the corner of the box! The finished puzzle is 19" x 14" and includes about 54 pieces, all of which I can attest are present. It was fun doing this puzzle! Except for some buckling of the individual pieces, it is in very good condition. Some pieces represent objects like cars and shoes and a dog.


1946? Walt Disney Jigsaw Puzzle: The Grasshopper and the Ants.  Series No. 3.  NY: Jayman Specialty Company.  $15 at a Milwaukee antique dealer, June, '18.

"300 pieces and a 14" x 22" Picture!" proclaims the cover, which is slit in one place and bowed, as the picture shows.  I have not yet tried the puzzle, whose picture on the cover is true to the Disney cartoon of GA.  The series contains TH as well as "The Ugly Duckling" and "Pinnochio."  Characters from other Disney favorites, like "Snow White," as well as Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck grace the cover outside the picture of the puzzle.

1950? Le Lièvre et la Tortue. Puzzle env. 500 morceaux.  $20 from Dany Wolfs, Roeselare, Belgium, Dec., '00. 

There is a pleasant "finish of the race" scene on the cover of this oblong portrait-formatted box. It is signed by "collet." I have not tried the puzzle yet. Sorry!

1958 3 Aesop's Fables Puzzles. For ages 4-9. Heavy cardboard. Springfield, MA: Milton Bradley Company. $7 from Debbie Delp, Orange Park, FL, through Ebay, May, '99. Extra copies with boxes in poor condition for $9.99 from Judy Kozza, Allentown, PA, May, '00 and for $6.99 from Dennis Kirby, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, Nov., '00, both through Ebay.

Each of three thirty-piece puzzles includes a printed fable as part of its picture: LM, TH, and FC. I knew there had to be some old picture puzzles out there, and this is the first that I found.


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1958 FC. "Aptitude Tested Puzzle of 20 Pieces. For Ages 4 to 8." Heavy cardboard. 10¼" x 14¼". Sold as one of a set of three (with two Hansel-and-Gretal scenes dated 1955). 4508-1 (with 4508-7 and 4508-8). Made in U.S.A. Milton Bradley Company. $4.95 from Paula Edwards, Morgantown, NC, through Ebay, Sept., '99.

Many of the pieces of this puzzle are identifiable objects. In fact, if you look in the illustration, you can find an automobile. I find it curious that now that I have finally found three picture puzzles of fables, two of them were done by the same company in the same year!

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1970? Playskool TH puzzle. Wood. 12-piece. 290-01. Made in U.S.A. $4.25 from James Richter, New Paltz, NY, through Ebay, July, '00.

I remember this sort of puzzle fondly from my childhood. A heavy back supports the cut-out outline of the upper level of the puzzle. The large pieces fit right in. This simple puzzle pictures a very happy tortoise!

For fun, I offer views of the puzzle both inside its borders and alone. Click on either to see a large contrast of the two.


1972? Jaymar Tortoise and Hare Puzzle.  Ages 4-6.  12 pieces.  Copyright Drawing Board Greeting Cards.  Jaymar Specialty Company, Brooklyn, NY.  $11.99 from glass-eye-industries through Ebay, May, '19.

This puzzle fits together very tightly.  I learned how difficult it is to put a puzzle inside its frame onto a flatbed scanner!  There is also a puzzle of TMCM in the same series of six puzzles for ages 4 to 6.  Hmmmm.....




1975? Ed-U-Cards Junior Classics Picture Puzzle: "The Raven and the Swan." 10" x 14" picture. Aesop's Fables with Story Booklet (booklet missing). Over 100 pieces. Series No. 3901. NY: Ed-U-Cards Mfg. Corp. $2 from Barb Girt, North Canton, OH, through Ebay, Nov., '00.

The picture is rather simple and static: a swan and raven face each other. The artist's signature seems to be either "Alihi" or "Aliki."




1975? Ed-U-Cards Junior Classics Picture Puzzle: "The Tortoise and the Hare." 10" x 14" picture. Aesop's Fables with Story Booklet (booklet and two pieces missing). Over 100 pieces. Series No. 3901. NY: Ed-U-Cards Mfg. Corp. $9 from Tony Niehart, Vermilion, OH, through Ebay, Jan., '20. 

I needed to see how many pieces were missing, so I did the puzzle myself.  The artist seems to be "Aliki."  And now I wonder: Are there more fable puzzles in this series?  And now, one day later, I have found one of the two missing pieces!  Maybe I'll still find the other one!



1988 Le Lièvre et la Tortue. Les Fables de la Fontaine. 150-piece picture puzzle with poster and bilingual text. 31.5 x 41.5 cm. Paris: Jeux Nathan S.A. Found in a toy store on Jackson Square in New Orleans.

Perhaps the most memorable feature of the picture here is that the tortoise is sweating!

2009 Les Fables de Roland: Les Animaux d'Esope.  Cernuschi.  Hardbound.  Nimes, France: SDP Le Livre Club.  $30.31 from Kbooks, Scarborough, ON, Canada, through eBay, Sept., '13.  

"With this book of six puzzles, learn to read while having fun."  This "livre-puzzle" offers three Aesopic fables related through pages six of which are picture puzzles.  Under the "puzzle" section of this catalogue, I offer pictures of the cover, featuring GA, and of one scene from "The Two Asses."  Other fables here are "The Weasel and the Chickens" and "The Dog and His Master."  It is curious that the fables pictured on the two covers, GA and TMCM, do not appear in the book. The book itself is sturdy and well made.  It is of course rare to see the French featuring Aesop for fables.  I list this book among both books and puzzles.



2015? Nine-Piece Picture Puzzle: Le pot de terre et le pot de fer.  Fable de Jean de La Fontaine.  Imprimerie La Dhuys.  Fabrique en France.  Unknown source.  

The two pots in the foreground echo the scene in the background: the poor man pays while the rich man rides off without paying.  A little research suggests that this printer did a series of La Fontaine puzzles in 2015, including at least TMCM.  Will I be able to find more of them?