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Michael Seidel founded his company in 1879 in Zirndorf (near Fürth) in Germany. In the first decades they produced small items such as mirrors and  whistling spinning tops. In 1903, the son Georg Seidel took over the firm and expanded  into toy trumpets, doll dishes and from app. 1919 he added mechanical banks. The banks were a huge success and –in many variations- over 4,5 million were sold. Between 1939 -1942 they produced 2 different KdF Volkswagen banks (1 variation with orange front or green front and another variation had a different design). Starting from 1942, production stopped as the company was forced to produce articles for warfare.

After the war, from mid-1947, they started again producing banks and one of the most successful was the Shell bank with the Shell employee popping out of the bank, when a coin was inserted. In 1983, the company was sold and incorporated in the firm of Martin Fuchs, also located in Zirndorf.

These special German tin coin registering banks (spardose or sparkasse) were made in many different themes and also with a lithographed KdF Wagen design on the sides. The mechanical bank would keep track of 5 and 10 Reichspfennig coin deposits into the bank (100 Reichspfennig = 1 Reichsmark). A 5 or 10 Reichspfennig coin was placed in the coin slot on top of the bank and the lever pushed forward. There was a window on the bank indicating the amount of coins that had been deposited. When 5 or 10 Reichsmarks were accumulated, the banks door blew open automatically and the coins tumbled out. With the coins gathered together, a KdF Wagen Savers stamp could then be purchased and placed in the KdF Sparkarte to eventually buy that KdF Wagen. These SEIDEL KdF era Spardose Banks are from the Rick Search collection.

Additional Info

  • Manufacturer: SEIDEL
  • Length: 130mm X100mm X 50mm
  • Production Era: 1938-43
  • Country: Germany
  • Materials: Tin Lithograph
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