Leipzig: Verlag der Leipziger Lehrmittel-Anstalt (Dr. Oskar Schneider, [n.d., 1888]. First edition of this catalogue advertising Richter’s Anchor Blocks. With thirty-five color plates elaborately illustrated with structures built from Anchor Stone blocks. Lacking backstrip, but binding is sound. Some edgewear and some light dustsoiling. Label of Berlin retailer Bernhard Keilich to front flyleaf. A very good copy of a rare item. Publisher’s brown pebbled cloth titled in gold and stamped in black. Oblong folio. 81 pp. Item #17549
Anchor Stone blocks were invented in Germany by Otto and Gustav Lillienthal in 1879. They drew on the designs of Froebel Gifts three through six (building blocks), which were designed by German pedagogue Friedrich Froebel (1782 – 1852) to teach children abstract thinking and hand-eye coordination through play. In 1884, Friedrich Richter purchased the rights to the blocks, which eventually “became the most elaborate and successful building-block toy of all time…based on a cubic module that owed its logic to Froebel’s system, Anchor Blocks where eventually made in over one thousand different shapes and in sets weighing several hundreds of pounds,” (Brosterman, p. 55). Each set of blocks can be rearranged into numerous layouts, including standing structures. Figures like Max Born, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Albert Einstein, and Walter Gropius all played with the blocks as children.
OCLC records no copies. Brosterman, Norman. Inventing Kindergarten, pp. 50-57.