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Wooden blocks have been a part of childhood since the 17th century when English philosopher John Locke talked about them in a statement he gave in 1693. The statement spoke about how children would enjoy learning the alphabet more by using the alphabet nursery blocks common during the time period. In 1798, a book entitled “Practical Education” mentioned wooden blocks, calling them rational toys to educate children on spatial relationships and making different parts into a whole.

Blocks were first mass produced by S. L. Hill, of Brooklyn, New York. Hill attained a patent for ornamenting wood, which was a coloring of block surfaces prior to embossing them and adding a final coloration. Beginning in the 1850s, companies began making terracotta toy block sets that created structures as well... Read more

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