ABOVE: A thoroughly modern Santa graces the delightfully styled cover of the Christmas 1957 FAO Schwarz Toys Catalog and appears in a variety of very entertaining illustrations throughout the big 98 page book.

ABOVE: Appearances of Yonezawa's Battery Operated Robot in print are exceptionally rare. Inclusion of the toy in the 1957 FAO Schwarz catalog is one of the few clues collectors have today that let us know when the toy was originally available. In an interesting twist, batteries were included with the robot. By 1961 Yonezawa's Battery Operated Robot, often referred to as the Directional Robot today, had been superceded by a trio of new Yonezawa releases named Mr. Robot, Modern Robot, and Cragstan Robot.

ABOVE: Despite a very French sounding name, Susie Robette was made in Two Rivers, Wisconsin, by Metal Ware. Proclaimed to be the first female robot by FAO Schwarz, Susie was part of Metal Ware's "Little Lady" series of popular housekeeping toys that had been entertaining children since 1922. By the 1950s the Little Lady product lineup was quite extensive and effectively mirrored the colorful and rapidly changing 1950s consumer appliance and housewares market in miniature. Susie Robette was perhaps one of the most elaborate toys to be ever be shown at Metal Ware's New York showroom located in the 200 Fifth Avenue building. Although pricey, the battery operated robot was substantial in size and well-detailed with a silver metallic finish, copper wire ponytail, and a bright turquoise and red apron. Several very realistic cleaning accessories were included which could all be held by Susie's special gripping hands. Susie was available for several seasons and landed a brief mention as part of an article profiling toys for Christmas 1960 in the August 1960 issue of Changing Times magazine.

ABOVE: Artwork on the back cover reminded readers that FAO Schwarz had been in business nearly 100 years. Although still owned by the Schwarz family in 1957, no family member had taken an active role in the company since 1931. In addition to the Fifth Avenue flagship store, by 1957 FAO Schwarz totaled three including branches in Boston as well as Ardmore PA. The total number of stores would double by 1960 after branches in Cleveland, Atlanta, and Westchester, New York, had opened.  BELOW: Visit the Time Magazine archive to read more about FAO Schwarz.